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PR Newswire (U.S.)

KPMG Study Ranks San Juan As Number One U.S. City To Do Business Puerto Rico Has The Lowest Operating Costs In United States, Making It An Ideal Business Location

February 27, 2004
Copyright ©2004 PR Newswire Association LLC. All rights reserved.

WASHINGTON, Feb. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- San Juan, Puerto Rico, is the number one location to do business in the United States, according to a recent study by KPMG LLP, the audit, tax and advisory firm. San Juan was found to have the lowest business operating costs among the 44 U.S. cities examined in the study. The firm also named San Juan the most fiscally efficient location for corporate service operations as compared to other U.S. and international metropolitan areas.

When measured against 98 other cities around the world, KPMG also ranked San Juan as the number one most cost effective city for medical device manufacturing, the second least expensive city for the telecommunications industry, the third least expensive city to assemble electronics and the fourth least expensive city for pharmaceutical production.

San Juan's top rating comes as no surprise to the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico's Secretary of Economic Development and Commerce, Milton Segarra. When asked what made Puerto Rico such an attractive corporate site he replied, "We have the existing infrastructure, a strategic location, state-of-the-art communications and a highly educated population that make Puerto Rico an ideal business environment, no matter what industry you are in."

Segarra made the observation that several additional factors enable Puerto Rico to compete as a premier location on a global scale, "Thanks to our vibrant pharmaceutical industry and our strong manufacturing base, many multinationals are not only opening operations in Puerto Rico, but are expanding their current activities on the Island. This is a direct reflection of our solid economy and of the healthy atmosphere in which companies can invest and conduct business."

Several corporations are taking advantage of the competitive edge Puerto Rico offers over other cities as a result of its low labor costs and other benefits. Hewlett Packard, Pfizer and Baxter International Incorporated are among the global companies that have facilities on the Island. More than half of the Fortune 100 companies now utilize Puerto Rico's productive and committed workforce.

Although manufacturing is the Island's largest industry, pharmaceutical production, research & development and software design currently account for a high percentage of Puerto Rico's employment. This emergence of a multitude of industries is made possible by Puerto Rico's dynamic infrastructure, which utilizes the Island's intellectual capital to strengthen innovation and foster partnerships that lead to ventures in technological areas.

As Secretary Segarra points out, Puerto Rico's appeal can be largely attributed to its unique Commonwealth status, "When you consider the fact that you can reap the benefits and protections of operating inside the United States with the added tax benefits and economic incentives of operating as a foreign corporation, Puerto Rico is a logical choice for United States corporations looking to expand their operations."

In addition to the optimal benefits the Commonwealth status affords, the administration of Governor Sila M. Calderon has invested billions of dollars in grants, financial incentives, public works projects and venture capital initiatives to create a competitive business environment. Such initiatives will continue to promote growth and innovation in Puerto Rico well into the 21st century.

About the Study

The KPMG 2004 Competitive Alternatives study serves as a guide for U.S. business leaders seeking international corporate locations that provide a competitive advantage in today's global marketplace. The study -- KPMG's most comprehensive analysis to date -- compares the cost of doing business in 17 industries and 11 different countries throughout North America, Europe and Asia. The 121 cities examined were rated according to 27 value components, including: labor, facility, transportation and utility costs.


The Puerto Rico Industrial Development Company is one of the components of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DDEC) within the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. The DDEC's function is to promote an environment that facilitates the creation of jobs and sustainable growth within every sector of the economy by establishing coordinated economic development through its regional offices, which are located across the mainland United States. If you are interested in obtaining more information about DDEC, you can access the website You can also obtain more information about PRIDCO at

Web site:

CONTACT: Meredith Henry, +1-202-326-1715, +1-202-841-6430, or ShannonVezina, +1-202-326-1773, +1-202-359-5137, both for the Puerto Rico IndustrialDevelopment Company

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