Singapore, Paris, Hong Kong tie for world’s most expensive city

The world's most expensive city. Can you tell where it

The world's most expensive city. Can you tell where it is? Credit ISTOCK

Paris, Singapore, and Hong Kong all equally share the title of the world's most expensive city, according to The Economist Intelligence Unit's (EIU) 2019 Worldwide Cost of Living Survey.

The EIU considers and compares the average cost of more than 160 items - from food, toiletries and clothing, to domestic help, transport, and utility bills - in 133 cities across 93 countries.

The trio of cities sharing the top spot is 7 per cent more expensive to live in than NY, according to the EIU, which compiles its list from a survey of 160 products and services across 93 countries.

For the Survey, New York was used as a benchmark.

A city's drop in the index does not necessarily mean life automatically gets cheaper for people living there, as prices adjust to inflation often quicker than wages, said Güneş Cansız of the World Resources Institute (WRI), a think tank. Tel Aviv, Israel - the sole Middle Eastern country in the top 10 - tied with Los Angeles to rank tenth. Meanwhile, cities like Seoul and Copenhagen is at the same level with NY and shared the same seventh place. "However, European cities tend to have the highest costs in the household, personal care, recreation and entertainment categories-with Zurich and Geneva the most expensive in these categories-perhaps reflecting a greater premium on discretionary spending", it said.

Outside the top 10, the EIU said the cost of living in Chinese cities remains relatively stable, while Southeast Asian destinations were moving up the ranks.

Meanwhile, Kuala Lumpur has risen ten spots to 88th in the ranking while Manila is at 92nd after climbing nine spots up. A surge in domestic prices, pushing London up eight positions to joint 22nd, is a main factor.

It is "not surprising" that the French capital was high up in the ranking as it has been in the top 10 since 2003, report author Roxana Slavcheva told Euronews.

"Converging costs in traditionally more expensive cities are a testament to globalization and the similarity of tastes and shopping patterns", she said in a statement.

The report also mentioned that currency fluctuations remained to be a major cause for changes in the ranking.

Syria is ranked just above Caracas at 132nd place, while Nigeria's Lagos ties with Pakistan's Karachi at 127th place.

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