ECONOMY | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Singapore climbs eight spots in costliest expat city rankings

It ranked 12th due to another strong year for the Singapore dollar.

Singapore has jumped up eight spots to rank as the 12th most expensive location in the world for expatriates, findings from ECA International’s latest Cost of Living survey revealed.

Amongst its Asian peers, the city-state ranked sixth, overtaking Beijing, Busan and Yokohama from a year ago.

Also read: Singapore expat pay package hit $325,000 in 2018

“Singapore’s rise in our rankings is largely due to another strong year for the Singapore dollar,” explained Lee Quane, regional director of Asia at ECA International. “Whilst increases in prices have been small over the past year, the strength of the Singapore dollar relative to other currencies makes Singapore the 12th most expensive location in the world.

This also marks the continuation of a longer-term trend, with Singapore rising 18 places since 2014 when it was 30th in the global rankings, he added.

Ashgabat, Turkmenistan rose up from its 28th place to take the top spot as the costliest location in the world for expats both regionally and globally. In Asia, it was followed by Hong Kong, Tokyo, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Yokohama, Beijing, Busan and Nagoya.

Also read: Expat rental rates are cheaper by $677 in 2019: ECA International

ECA’s Cost of Living Survey compared a basket of like-for-like consumer goods and services commonly purchased by international assignees in 482 locations worldwide to help businesses ensure that their employees’ spending power is maintained when they are sent on international assignments. Certain living costs such as accommodation rental, utilities, car purchases and school fees are usually covered by separate allowances and were not included.  

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