Greater Vancouver's economy looks better than it is: report

A report looking at how the Greater Vancouver economy compares to its global peers found the brand is strong, but performance is lagging.

The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade (GVBT) commissioned The Business of Cities, a UK-based urban intelligence firm, to launch the “Benchmarking Greater Vancouver Report”.

The report aims to assess how the region measures up against leading international peer cities in „economic performance, infrastructure and sustainability and liveability”.

A GVBT release Thursday said the report shows „a significant gap between how Greater Vancouver is perceived globally and the region's actual performance.”

The board says the local economy is „underperforming”, ranking the area 14th out of 20 peer cities for 'prosperity'.

Criteria for that decision include productivity, funding-attractiveness, late-stage start-ups and research and development spending in the region.

Housing still dominates local challenges, the report found, with Vancouver ranking third in English-speaking housing markets.

„While tourists and expats love our city, locals and long-term visitors increasingly find the city unaffordable and lacking in cultural amenities and nightlife experiences,” the release said.

GVBoT president and CEO Brigitte Anderson said the region needed to change to match its economic performance with the brand.

„We need collective action to raise our standard of living, unlock investment and raise incomes, or more people will price themselves out,” Anderson said.

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