Taipei ranked world’s 61st most expensive city

Taipei has been named the 61st most expensive city in the world for expatriates this year, up from 62nd last year, according to this year’s Cost of Living Survey released on Thursday by Mercer, a leading firm of financial analysts.

Mercer put Luanda, the capital of oil-rich Angola, at the top of its annual expat cost-of-living survey for the second year in a row, followed by N’Djamena in Chad.

European and Asian cities also continued to dominate as the costliest cities, with Hong Kong in third place, followed by Singapore.

Zurich, Switzerland, jumped three places to fifth, followed by Geneva, Switzerland, in sixth.

Tokyo dropped four spots to rank seventh.

Other cities appearing in the top 10 of Mercer’s costliest cities for expatriates are Bern, Switzerland, Moscow and Shanghai.

Four of the top 10 cities in this year’s ranking are in Asia. The most expensive, Hong Kong, jumped three places from last year. Singapore is the next most expensive city in the region, gaining one position from last year, followed by Tokyo, which dropped four places this year. Jumping four spots since last year, Shanghai is followed by Beijing (11), Seoul (14) and Shenzhen, China (17).

Cities in the US have climbed in the rankings due to the relative stability of the US dollar against other major currencies, in addition to significant drops for cities in other regions.

A rise in the rental accommodation market pushed New York up eight places to 16th, the highest-ranked city in the region.

Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city and financial hub, ranked No. 211 and is the world’s least expensive city for expatriates.

Mercer’s survey is designed to help multinational companies and governments determine compensation allowances for their expatriate employees. New York is used as the base city and all cities are compared against it. Currency movements are measured against the US dollar.

The survey covers 211 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost of more than 200 items in each location, including housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment. Source: CNA