The most expensive cities in the world: Singapore and Zurich at top of the list, Tel Aviv dropped to eighth place.
In last year’s EIU ranking, Singapore shared first place with New York, which dropped to third place; Zurich rose from sixth place, Tel Aviv dropped from third place, but this year’s survey was conducted before the start of the war. Damascus was ranked as the least expensive city, followed by Tehran and Tripoli.
According to the global cost of living index of the research company EIU, Tel Aviv is the eighth most expensive city in the world, sharing its rank with Copenhagen. The first place is shared by Zurich and Singapore, with New York and Geneva ranked together in third place.
The current index reflects the inflation that remains high in large parts of the world, and the average cost of living that has increased by 7.4% compared to last year. However, this is a slowdown compared to the 8.1% rise in prices recorded in 2022. Grocery prices increased at the highest rate; electricity prices increased at the lowest. Upsana Dutt, editor of the index, stated that “In our estimation, inflation will continue to decrease in 2024, after the delayed effects of interest rate increases will begin to be reflected in economic activity,”
Zurich rose from sixth place -last year’s rank- and was named as the most expensive city, mainly due to the strengthening of the Swiss franc which led to an increase in the prices of groceries, household products and entertainment. Singapore kept its place at the top of the ranking, this being the ninth time out of the last 11 rankings, and the editors mainly noted the high prices of transportation and clothing. New York dropped to third place after being ranked together with Singapore last year, prices in the city increased by 1.9%. Geneva was ranked along with New York.
Hong Kong ranked fifth, followed by Los Angeles in sixth and Paris in seventh. Tel Aviv, which dropped from third place, and Copenhagen, were ranked joint in eighth, noted that the survey on which the ranking was based was conducted before the Hamas attack on October 7th . San Francisco rounded out the top ten. In total there were three representatives for the USA, two representatives from Asia and four European cities.
In contrast, Damascus was ranked as the least expensive city, followed by Tehran and Tripoli. Caracas, the Venezuelan capital was not ranked at all, the reason being that prices in the city have jumped by 450% since 2022, what might distort the calculations. The cities of Santiago de Querétaro and Aguascalientes, Mexico showed the biggest increases to 51st and 82nd places, respectively. This is an increase of 48 places for Santiago and 39 places for Aguascalientes. This increase is due to the strengthening of the peso against the dollar and an increase in investments. Berlin also rose in the ranking from 49th place last year to the 42nd place this year.
At the opposite, the Chinese cities fell in the ranking this year due to the slow economic recovery. For example, Beijing dropped 26 places to 60. Russia’s Moscow and St. Petersburg recorded the biggest drop, Moscow dropped to 142nd and St. Petersburg to 147th. Due to the sanctions imposed on the country since the invasion of Ukraine and the weakening of the ruble.
173 cities from around the world participated in the index, and the ranking was based on comparing the prices of more than 400 products and services.