Chinese cities dominate 20 most expensive places for expats in Asia Pacific

Shanghai jumped from third place in 2014 to become the most expensive city in Asia this year.
Shanghai jumped from third place in 2014 to become the most expensive city in Asia this year. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Chinese cities dominate a list of the 20 most expensive in the Asia-Pacific region for expatriates, as the yuan strengthens against rival currencies, a cost of living survey by ECA International shows.

Chinese cities including Hong Kong account for 11 of the 20 most expensive Asian cities, the London-based consultancy said.

Shanghai jumped from third place in 2014 to become the most expensive city in Asia this year.

"In spite of the minor depreciation in the renminbi (yuan) against the dollar over the summer, it has strengthened against most other currencies leading to Shanghai becoming the most expensive Asian city for international assignees," said ECA's Asia regional director, Lee Quane.

"It is likely that major Chinese cities will remain expensive destinations for mobile executives for the foreseeable future."

Chinese cities also make up the biggest share of a list of the 30 most expensive worldwide for expatriates, with six of them beating cities in Switzerland and Japan.

Chinese cities listed in the study jumped across the board in Asia.

Beijing (2nd), Guangzhou (6th) and Shenzhen (7th) rose from fourth, 13th and 22nd.

Macau saw the largest rank increase, moving up to 13th place from 34th last year.