In Focus
ECONOMY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong
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Is Hong Kong getting cheaper as a location?

Survey shows Hong Kong has dropped 26 places to 58th position in the global ranking - the largest fall of any city in Asia.

Meanwhile Singapore has become the sixth most expensive location in Asia after four Japanese cities and Seoul, according to the latest Cost of Living Survey conducted by ECA International. Singapore rose from last year’s eighth position to sixth in the latest survey, overtaking Hong Kong.

ECA International reported:

Regional overview - Tokyo tops the ranking again, regionally and globally
The Japanese yen has remained strong and Tokyo remains the most expensive location in the region for international assignees. For the second consecutive year, it is also the most costly globally.

Hong Kong has dropped 26 places to 58th position in the global ranking - the largest fall of any city in Asia. Within the region, Hong Kong has slipped from being the sixth to the ninth most expensive location, despite the price of goods there having increased even more than this time last year.

“When we look at Hong Kong in a regional context, the weak dollar means that the city is now cheaper than a number of other locations including Singapore, Beijing and Shanghai, where not only has there been significant price inflation but also currencies have strengthened,” says Quane.

The most expensive locations in mainland China are Beijing, in 35th position globally, and Shanghai in 41st. Of the Asian locations surveyed, Chinese provincial capitals have experienced the largest climbs up the global rankings: Chengdu rose 21 places to 144th place and Wuhan up 20 places to 146th. On average, the actual prices of goods and services commonly purchased by international assignees have risen by 9% in China in the last 12 months.

A strong won means that Korean locations have maintained their positions towards the top of the global ranking. While Seoul has only risen one place to 21st in the last year, this is still significantly higher than its position two years ago in 56th place. Within the region, it ranks as the fifth most expensive location for international assignees, ahead of Singapore, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

Locations in Pakistan came in at the bottom of the regional ranking, with Karachi ranked 237th globally.

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