Singapore Tops World's Most Expensive City, But Other Asian Cities Are Cheaper

 @SophieXSong on March 04 2014 2:09 PM
Singapore Skyline 2012 2
Singapore skyline Reuters

Singapore is now the most expensive city to live in. That's right, the high cost of driving a car there, the astronomical utility bills there and the lofty price of clothing there -- more expensive than anywhere else -- make the Southeast Asian city the most expensive place on the planet to reside in. 

Paris, Oslo, Zurich and Sydney rounded out the top five most-expensive cities in the Worldwide Cost of Living Survey, published by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). Tokyo, which topped the list in 2013, dropped to sixth place. The tool uses New York City as a base, the BBC reported on Monday.

"Improving sentiment in structurally expensive European cities combined with the continued rise of Asian hubs means that these two regions continue to supply most of the world's most expensive cities," said the editor of the report, Jon Copestake.

But Asia also has some of the cheapest cities in the world, as a result of income inequality. India’s major cities like Mumbai and New Delhi are cheap to live in because the cities’ workers make very low wages.

Singapore’s rise in living expenses corresponds with its emergence as the newest global financial center, with the possibility of supplanting Switzerland eventually. Private banking in the island nation especially experienced an impressive expansion recently.

“Singapore’s rise is partially attributable to the continued strength of the Singapore dollar, but the city has seen price rises too, which have no doubt been compounded by a reliance on imports,” Jon Copestake, editor of EIU report, said in a statement, according to Bloomberg

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