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Zurich and Singapore Tied as World's Most Expensive Cities: EIU Report

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Dil Bar Irshad
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Zurich and Singapore Tied as World's Most Expensive Cities: EIU Report

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit's (EIU) latest report, Zurich and Singapore have jointly dethroned New York City as the world's most expensive cities. This significant rise in ranking for Zurich, up five places from the previous survey, is attributed to the strength of the Swiss Franc and the city's high cost of living, including prices for food and leisure activities.

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Cost of Living Crisis: Not Over Yet

On average, prices have increased by 7.4% year on year in local currency terms for over 200 commonly used goods and services. This is a slight drop from the last year's record 8.1% increase but is still 'significantly higher than the trend from 2017-2021,' the EIU noted. The report cautions that the global cost-of-living crisis is far from over.

(Read Also: Paris, Zurich, and Singapore Top the List of World’s Most Expensive Cities in 2023)

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Top Ten: A Glimpse into Global Living Costs

Following closely behind Zurich and Singapore are Geneva and New York City, jointly holding the third spot. Rounding up the top ten are Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Paris, Copenhagen, Tel Aviv, and San Francisco. Interestingly, four of the top ten cities are in Europe, a result of high inflation affecting food and clothing, as well as the appreciation of the euro against the dollar.

Least Expensive Cities: A Contrast

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On the other scale, Damascus in Syria is listed as the least expensive city, followed by Tehran in Iran and Tripoli in Libya. Russian cities Moscow and St. Petersburg have seen a significant drop in the ranking due to the devaluation of the Ruble, a result of sanctions related to the conflict in Ukraine.

(Read Also: EIU Report: Zurich and Singapore Lead as New York and London Make Significant Moves)

Methodology: How the Rankings are Derived

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The EIU conducts its cost of living survey semi-annually, comparing prices for over 400 products and services in 173 cities and converting them into US dollars. The survey for the current ranking was conducted from August 14 to September 11. It's important to note that the data was collected before the outbreak of the conflict between Israel and Hamas, which has since affected the exchange rates and the cost of living in Israel.

In conclusion, the report offers a telling snapshot of the global cost of living, highlighting not only the most expensive cities but also the least expensive ones. It underscores the ongoing cost of living crisis and the need for policy measures to address the issue effectively.

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