Singapore rises 4 places to be 31st most expensive place in the world for expats

The Singapore skyline as seen from Swissotel the Stamford at dusk on Sept 16, 2013. Singapore is becoming increasingly expensive for expatriates, after another survey said that the island state is becoming more costly for foreigners working here
The Singapore skyline as seen from Swissotel the Stamford at dusk on Sept 16, 2013. Singapore is becoming increasingly expensive for expatriates, after another survey said that the island state is becoming more costly for foreigners working here. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 

SINGAPORE - Singapore is becoming increasingly expensive for expatriates, after another survey said that the island state is becoming more costly for foreigners working here.

In a global ranking for the most expensive locations for expats, ECA, a human resource consultancy, said that Singapore rose four places to 31st overall in the world.

It is ranked 9th in the region, behind cities such as Shanghai and Tokyo but ahead of Australian cities such as Sydney.

The cost of living for expats, based on ECA's own list of shopping items and services, rose about 2.3 per cent here over the past year, compared with 6 per cent on average for the rest of Asia.

The list, however, did not take into account housing rentals, utilities and car purchases.

What helped Singapore contain its cost was the weakening of the Sing dollar, which helped reduce its relative costs, said ECA.

Said Mr Lee Lee Quane, Regional Director - Asia, ECA International: "Despite Singapore's rise in the global ranking, companies sending talent to Singapore from parts of the world where the currency has strengthened against the dollar, such as Europe or the States, will be able to continue to maintain their assignee's spending power with a lower cost of living allowance."

Other surveys such as those from the Economist Intelligence Unit have also said that Singapore is one of the most expensive countries in the world for expatriates to live in.