New York, Singapore top 'world's costliest city' survey

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Dec 01 2022 08:26 AM

People pose for pictures in Times Square in New York, New York, USA, 15 November 2022 (issued 16 November 2022). A recent estimate by NYC & Company, a not-for-profit organization that promotes New York tourism and travel, is estimating 6.5 million people will visit the city between Thanksgiving and New Years and that the city will have nearly 85% of its record number tourist visitors in 2019. EPA-EFE/JUSTIN LANE
People pose for pictures in Times Square in New York, New York, USA, 15 November 2022 (issued 16 November 2022). A recent estimate by NYC & Company, a not-for-profit organization that promotes New York tourism and travel, is estimating 6.5 million people will visit the city between Thanksgiving and New Years and that the city will have nearly 85% of its record number tourist visitors in 2019. EPA-EFE/JUSTIN LANE

LONDON - New York and Singapore are jointly the world's most expensive cities after inflation soared this year, an annual survey showed Thursday.

The pair displaced last year's number one Tel Aviv, which fell to third place this time round in the Worldwide Cost of Living index from London-based Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

The survey revealed, "the soaring cost of living in the world's biggest cities as the war in Ukraine and continuing pandemic restrictions disrupt supply chains, particularly for energy and food".

New York hit the top spot for the first time, while Damascus and Tripoli remained the cheapest cities.

Prices rocketed by an average 8.1 percent in the 172 major cities covered by the EIU survey, conducted between August and September.

The survey "also shows the impact of the strong US dollar on our city rankings", it noted.

A total of 50,000 worldwide prices were converted into dollars.

The US currency has jumped this year as the Federal Reserve hikes interest rates by large amounts to try and tame decades-high inflation.

In addition to New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco moved into the top ten.

The biggest upward movers were Moscow and St Petersburg, "which shot up by 88 and 70 places respectively as prices soared amid Western sanctions and buoyant energy markets supported the rouble".

Upasana Dutt, who headed the research, said "the war in Ukraine, Western sanctions on Russia and China's zero-covid policies have caused supply-chain problems that, combined with rising interest rates and exchange-rate shifts, have resulted in a cost-of-living crisis across the world."

"We can clearly see the impact in this year's index, with the average price rise across the 172 cities in our survey being the strongest we've seen in the 20 years for which we have digital data," she added. 

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