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Car costs make Singapore world's most expensive city for expats for 5th year running:


Car costs make Singapore world's most expensive city for expats for 5th year running:


SINGAPORE: The cost of owning a car in Singapore has contributed to the country being the world's most expensive city for expatriates to live in, for the fifth year in a row, according to survey results released by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) on Thursday (Mar 15).
Paris came in joint second with Zurich, followed by Hong Kong and Oslo, according to the Worldwide Cost of Living report covering 133 cities worldwide. Seoul and Geneva shared sixth place, while Copenhagen, Tel Aviv and Sydney rounded out the top 10 rankings.

Despite topping the ranking, Singapore still offers "relative value" in some categories, especially compared to regional peers, said the EIU.
"For categories such as personal care, household goods and domestic help Singapore remains significantly cheaper than its peers, but it remains the most expensive place in the world to buy and run a car and the third-priciest destination in which to buy clothes," said the survey.
In terms of food and drink, the cost of living in Singapore is "on a par" with that of Shanghai, it added.
Seoul, Tokyo and Hong Kong are the most expensive places in the world to buy staple goods.
AdvertisementAdvertisementSingapore has avoided Asia's massive traffic jams by controlling vehicle ownership through a quota system under which a buyer must pay for a Certificate of Entitlement - currently nearly S$40,000 - on top of the vehicle's actual price.
That means a basic sedan comes with a S$100,000 price tag.
Asian cities tend to be most expensive for grocery shopping, while Europe comes out tops in household, personal care, recreation and entertainment, the survey said.
Currency fluctuations remain a major cause for the changes in the rankings, with the weaker US dollar keeping American cities out of the top 10.
War-wracked Damascus, the troubled Venezuelan capital Caracas, Lagos in Nigeria and the Pakistani city of Karachi are among the world's cheapest cities, the survey showed.
"Put simply, cheaper cities also tend to be less liveable," it said.
The Worldwide Cost of Living is meant to help companies calculate relocation costs for expatriate staff, and compares more than 400 individual prices across 160 products and services.
These include food, drink, clothing, household supplies and personal care items, home rents, transport, utility bills, private schools, domestic help and recreational costs.
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