Asian cities are becoming more and more expensive, Hong Kong is the second most-expensive city for expatriates to live in.

Asian cities are becoming more and more expensive, Hong Kong is the second most-expensive city for expatriates to live in.

Ranked the most expensive city in Asia in terms of living cost, according to consultancy Mercer.

Mercer, a global consulting firm, released its Cost of Living Survey 2015 on 17 June, HK is positioned as the 2nd most expensive city for expatriates to live in, while Luanda ranked the top.

The survey analyzed the costs of 200 goods and services from housing to food and leisure in 207 cities worldwide, USD is the base currency in the calculation.

HK dollar is pegged to the US dollar so the cost of living were being driven up especially accommodation. Furthermore, buying a cup of coffee in HK costs a double to that in London, while a pair of jeans in HK is twice as expensive as that in New York.

For foreign talents, HK is still attractive because worldwide companies are willing to relocate their employees to markets which is easy to do businesses rather than low living cost.

Topping the list for the third consecutive year is Luanda, the capital of Angola, due to the high price of imported goods and security services used by many foreigners there. Zurich was the third most expensive city and Geneva fifth.

Five out of the top 10 cities in the survey are in Asia.Hong Kong is followed by Singapore in fourth place, Shanghai sixth, Beijing seventh and Seoul eighth.

Tokyo dropped out of the top 10, falling four places to 11. Leung said the results showed the higher living cost in Hong Kong had an effect on locals, not just expats.

“While our rental accommodation cost is high and the Hong Kong dollar is pegged to the US dollar, the cost of goods and services here becomes relatively high,” Connie Leung Sze-man, Mercer’s Hong Kong information solutions business leader said.

She added that Mercer even expects to see an increase in the number of foreign employees accepting “local- plus” packages to relocate to the region.

“It has become increasingly easy to place foreign staff on local packages in Asian markets, including Hong Kong, thanks to the lower tax rate and relocation allowances, further expanding the Asian talent pool,” she said.

Source: The Standard Finance

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