Tel Aviv is world's most expensive city, with S'pore and Paris in joint second

The Israeli city of Tel Aviv climbed from fifth place last year to become the most expensive city in the world to live in this year. PHOTO: AFP

SINGAPORE - Tel Aviv is now the most expensive city in the world to live in, according to an index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

The Israeli city climbed from fifth place last year to head the rankings - the first time it has been in the top spot - after pushing Paris down to joint second place with Singapore.

Singapore rose two spots to dislodge Hong Kong as Asia's priciest city.

EIU data also revealed that price increases are contributing to the fastest rise in the cost of living for city dwellers in five years.

Its index showed that average prices for goods and services have risen 3.5 per cent year on year in local currency terms, compared with an increase of just 1.9 per cent this time last year.

Transport costs rose most rapidly in this year's survey, mainly because of costlier oil driving a 21 per cent increase in the price of unleaded petrol. Combined with fluctuating consumer demand and exchange-rate shifts, the resulting supply problems also fuelled price rises in the world's major cities.

The EIU conducts the survey twice a year, comparing more than 400 individual prices across over 200 products and services in 173 cities.

Data is collected each March and September with researchers surveying a range of stores, including supermarkets, mid-priced shops and higher-priced speciality outlets, as well as an array of service providers.

Items are individually weighted across a range of categories and a comparative index is produced using the relative difference by weighted item. It then compares all cities with a base city, New York, which has an index score of 100.

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