Commissioned by Siemens, the study by Credo entitled “The Mobility Opportunity” presented today in Singapore looked at transportation networks in 35 major cities around the globe and assessed how prepared cities were to meet future challenges such as population growth and higher competition.
The study said if all 35 cities studied implemented relative “best in class” standards, they stood to gain an economic benefit of up to US$238 billion (RM767.19 billion) annually by 2030.
Extrapolating to all comparably-sized cities globally with a population of around 750,000 and greater, this suggests an economic opportunity of roughly US$800 billion annually.
This corresponds to about 1% of global GDP.
Today, the potential benefit would be about US$360 billion per year.
With a high capacity system able to meet demand with minimal crowding and high levels of user functionality, Singapore is well able to cope with future growth, the study said.
The country was also praised for its long-term planning – helped by highly integrated governance – reliability and punctuality levels as well as provision of air-conditioning on almost all of its public transport vehicles.
Singapore’s only weakness is a relatively low network density which leaves some areas poorly connected, but long-term development plans and continuous investment to maintain the existing high standards are all that is required for it to retain its position, the report said.
Although transport is considered one of the major factors of a city’s competitiveness, lack of financial resources often constrains the ability of cities to invest in their transport networks, it said.
The study, which grouped cities into three categories to account for different levels of wealth and development, found the most cost-efficient cities globally are Copenhagen, Denmark (category: “Well-established cities”), Singapore (“High-density compact centres”) and Santiago, Chile (“Emerging cities”).
According to the study, cities are the engines for future growth. They generate 80% of global economic output, but in a globalised economy, with businesses and workforces increasingly able to relocate internationally, they must compete to offer the most attractive environment for economic activity.
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