Valencia – more than oranges


I returned in late 2006 from participation as an external consultant in an OECD experts group advising the Greater Valencia Region on investment attraction, internationalisation and innovation. 

This was a case study of a series of reviews undertaken by the OECD Programme on Local Economic and Employment Development (LEED).  The project aims at providing policy recommendations to the city governments, its economic development agency and their partners on how to develop an FDI and internationalisation strategy for the city. A final OECD report will be published early next year.

Valencia, south-east of Madrid, is the third largest city in Spain. It has a long tradition of academic excellence, a very substantial manufacturing base (transport equipment, textiles and clothing, ceramics, food, toys), strong lifestyle attributes, and serves as a major transport logistics hub into Europe.

Our discussions revealed concern within Valencia about competing with imports from China and India, the lack of connectivity between the research community and industry, ‘branch plant’ multinationals, and water availability.

These are issues in which certain regions in Australia have some experience, and Adelaide and Perth in particular have a window to collaborate with Valencia, being cities of similar size and located in a mediterranean climate. Valencia is also host to the 2007 Americas Cup – hence another link to Perth. We would be interested in hearing of agencies wishing to be briefed further on this.    

Further information on the LEED Programme and its activities can be found at:

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