Riyadh, Jeddah among world’s cheapest cities
London, March 4, 2014
Riyadh and Jeddah are among the cheapest 10 cities for expatriates in the world, while Singapore has outstripped Tokyo as the most expensive city, according to annual rankings by the Economist Intelligence Unit released on Tuesday.
The Saudi Arabian cities also offer cheap cost of living in a more stable environment, with price controls on staples continuing to guarantee low prices for many goods, said the report.
The report cited a strong Singaporean dollar, the high price of utilities and the cost of car ownership as among the factors contributing to Singapore taking the top spot away from Tokyo, which for years has led the rankings.
The calculations are based on the cost of living in U.S. dollars.
Paris rose six places to become the world's second-most expensive city, which the EIU said in part reflected a recovery by European economies.
Mumbai was the least expensive major city in which to live, partly due to government subsidies on some products and low local wages, followed by Karachi, New Delhi and Damascus as the fourth-cheapest, which EIU said reflected the weakening of the Syrian pound due to the country's civil war.
"Improving sentiment in structurally expensive European cities combined with the continued rise of Asian hubs means that these two regions continue to supply most of the world's most expensive cities," Jon Copestake, editor of the report, which looks at over 400 individual prices, said in a statement.
"But Asian cities also continue to make up many of the world's cheapest, especially in the Indian subcontinent."
After Singapore and Paris, the 10 cities with the highest cost of living, in descending order, were Oslo, Zurich, Sydney, Caracas, Geneva, Melbourne, Tokyo and Copenhagen.
London was ranked 15th most expensive city while New York was in 26th place. – TradeArabia News Service & Reuters