Singapore is the world’s most expensive city for the fifth straight year in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) latest Worldwide Cost of Living report, with Paris and Zurich tied for second place.
Asia Pacific and European destinations dominated the ranks of costliest cities identified in the report released this week. Tokyo and Osaka were conspicuous in their absence from the top 10, edged out by low inflation. The EIU survey is designed to help companies calculate cost-of-living allowances and build compensation packages for expatriates and business travellers. As recent as 2013, Tokyo was the world’s costliest city to live in.
The Japanese capital dropped seven places to 11th over the past year. Hong Kong, last year’s second-most expensive city, slipped to fourth place. Sydney rose four notches to break into the top 10, with Oslo, Geneva, Zurich and Copenhagen also climbing the list compiled from a survey of 160 items across 133 countries. “Currency fluctuations continue to be a major cause for changes in the ranking,” the EIU said.
Paris is the only euro zone city among the top 10 most expensive. Car ownership was a factor behind Singapore’s top ranking. The report noted that the city-state remains significantly cheaper than its peers in terms of household goods.