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2-min read

Want to Work Abroad? First Check Which 10 Cities Are Most Expensive for Expats

Consulting firm Mercer’s 2019 Global Talent Trends report covers 209 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost of more than 200 essential expenses ranging from household goods and entertainment to housing, transport, food and clothing.

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Updated:June 28, 2019, 4:26 PM IST
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Want to Work Abroad? First Check Which 10 Cities Are Most Expensive for Expats
Singapore has moved up one rank this year from the number four spot in the list in 2018. (Image: Reuters)
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Believe it or not, a latest survey shows that eight of the top 10 most expensive cities for overseas workers are in Asia, with the US and Europe just managing to find a place in the list with one city each. Consulting firm Mercer’s 2019 Global Talent Trends report covers 209 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost of more than 200 essential expenses ranging from household goods and entertainment to housing, transport, food and clothing.

The main purpose of the study was to act as a guide for major corporations to decide on reasonable pay packages for their highly-skilled employees. Read further to know how the cities are ranked:

1- Hong Kong: At number one is Hong Kong, retaining its last year’s position as the most expensive city to live for expats. The report noted that the foreign investment that was entering Asia had prompted expatriates drive the demand for high quality goods, services and accommodation in Asian cities.

2 – Tokyo (Japan): The capital city of Japan, the most populous metropolitan area in the planet, has kept its number two position as the steep housing cost there is bloating the overall cost of living.

3- Singapore: The island city has moved up one rank this year from the number four spot in the list in 2018.

4- Seoul (South Korea): Seoul also moved up to fourth position compared to last year’s fifth. The city has benefitted a lot from the economic boom that the country experienced since the end of the Korean War.

5- Zurich (Switzerland): Zurich is the only European city that made it to the top 10. This is due to weakened local currencies against the dollar, unease over Brexit and an escalating trade war.

6- Shanghai (China): China’s largest city Shanghai is the next in the list. The financial hub located in the Yangtze river delta is reportedly home for over 26 million people

7 - Ashgabat (Turkmenistan): This Central Asian city, formerly known as Poltoratsk, has jumped 36 places to attain the seventh position this year. It was ranked 43rd in the last year’s list. A shortage of its currency and imported goods raising prices are seen as key reasons.

8- Beijing (China): China’s capital city Beijing is at the eighth position. Besides being a global financial hub, the city is also home to many large state-owned companies.

9- New York (US): This is the only American city to make it to the top 10. Several cities in the United States climbed up in their rankings this year over the dollar’s strength.

10- Shenzhen (China): Coming at the tenth position, Shenzhen is the third Chinese city in the list. Located close to Hong Kong, Shenzhen has benefitted from foreign investment since the opening up of the Chinese economy.

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