Home/ News / World/  These are the 50 costliest places for foreign employees to live and work

Hong Kong is the world’s most expensive place for employees sent abroad to work, a survey showed comparing the prices of 200 goods and products in more than 400 cities

The Mercer’s 2022 cost of living city ranking reveals the most expensive cities for international employees. It provides employers with current, extensive and reliable data to help them navigate compensation strategies for their mobile employees in the unpredictable global markets.

Four Switzerland cities Zurich, Geneva, Basel and Bern ranked second to fifth place respectively in Mercer’s Cost of Living Survey 2022.

Three other Asian Cities — Singapore, Tokyo and Beijing — made the top 10, filling 8th, 9th and 10th spots respectively. High rankings for many Asian cities were driven by inflation and strong currencies, the management consultancy said in its report.

Apart from this, Israel’s Tel Aviv bagged the 6th place as the priciest place in the Middle East while New York City bagged the seventh spot.

The report also showed the cheapest places for foreign employees to live which included Turkey’s Ankara, Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan and Dushanbe in Tajikistan.

The report said global issues including COVID-19, war in Ukraine, exchange rate fluctuations and widespread inflation were affecting employees’ salaries and savings, while the number of professionals relocating to Asia over the past 18 months had fallen.

Tracey Ma, Mercer’s Regional Mobility Leader for Asia Pacific, said a talent shortage in developed countries, which rely heavily on foreign workers, could become an issue exacerbated by higher living costs.

“International assignment patterns are evolving faster than before" said Ma. She added that the rise of remote and flexible work means companies need to rethink their approach to managing a global workforce in order to attract and retain talent while ensuring cost efficiency.

Mercer measured the comparative cost of more than 200 things — including housing, transport, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment — to come up with its ranking.

Here are the top 50 most expensive cities for foreign workers:

1. Hong Kong, China

2. Zurich, Switzerland

3. Geneva, Switzerland

4. Basel, Switzerland

5. Bern, Switzerland

6. Tel Aviv, Israel

7. New York City, US

8. Singapore

9. Tokyo, Japan

10. Beijing, China

11. Copenhagen, Denmark

12. Shanghai, China

13. Shenzhen, China

14. Seoul, South Korea

15. London, UK

16. Nassau, Bahamas

17. Los Angeles, US

18. Guangzhou, China

19. San Francisco, US

20. Honolulu, US

21. Vienna, Austria

22. Qingdao, China

23. Bangui, Central African Republic

24. Libreville, Gabon

25. Amsterdam, Netherlands

26. Nanjing, China

27. Oslo, Norway

28. Taipei, Taiwan

29. Washington DC, US

30. Boston, US

31. Dubai, UAE

32. Miami, US

33. Munich, Germany

34. Busan, South Korea

35. Paris, France

36. Chicago, US

37. Osaka, Japan

38. Victoria, Seychelles

39. Brussels, Belgium

40. Shenyang, China

41. Djibouti

42. Atlanta, US

43. Helsinki, Finland

44. Chengdu, China

45. Seattle, US

46. Berlin, Germany

47. The Hague, Netherlands

48. Milan, Italy

49. Dublin, Ireland

50. Yokohama, Japan

(With inputs from Bloomberg)

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Updated: 29 Jun 2022, 10:53 AM IST
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