Great cities are key when it comes to the development of the economy because they have important factors such as capital, education, and industry. According to ThoughtCo, London had almost 6.5 million people in 1900 and it was the most populated city on the planet. The second position was New York with close to 3.5 million inhabitants. These cities became the engines of economic growth and wealth in their home countries. Today, we can see that many urban centers are so powerful and important that they have become global cities. They have assimilated a lot of people from the rural areas but also a lot of foreigners.

In some countries, the percentage of foreigners is even higher than the local population.

The service based-economy and the cities

The urban centers have been the right place for the development of the service-driven economy. The services have surpassed the manufacturing sector and this is evident in America and the United Kingdom. Tourism, financial activities, insurance, and more economic activities have grown exponentially in the cities.

Countries with urban populations grow faster than rural societies

According to the World Factbook, more than 82 percent of the British population lives in urban areas, and more than 81 percent of Americans live in cities too. In Japan, more than 93 percent of people live in urban areas.

In Hong Kong and Singapore, about 100 percent. On the other hand, we can see that in Afghanistan less than 27% of the inhabitants live in cities. Countries with high per capita incomes have more urban populations, with a few exceptions.

Infant mortality rate

According to the World Factbook, the percentage of rural population in Japan is almost three times less than in America, and the Infant Mortality Rate in the Asian country is just 2 per 1,000 vs 5.8 per 1,000 in the US.

In Hong Kong and Singapore, the infant mortality rates are just 2.7 and 2.4 per 1,000. Afghanistan has the highest rate, more than 112 per 1,000. The Principality of Monaco has the lowest one at just 1.8 per 1,000. All the population of Monaco is urban.

Life Expectancy

Countries with urban populations have longer life expectancies than rural societies.

Monaco has the longest life expectancy - it's almost 90 years. On the other hand, the lowest life expectancy belongs to Chad where it's less than 51 years. That African country has less than 23 percent of an urban population.