Luanda Most Expensive City

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    Although more European cities dominate the world’s top costliest locations for expatriates, several cities in Asia are among the top 10 while Luanda in Africa, holds the number one position, says Mercer’s ‘Cost of Living Survey.’ The survey covers 214 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost of more than 200 items in each location, including housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods, and entertainment. The difference in cost for these items can be dramatic. For example, the cost of a cup of coffee in Managua, Nicaragua, is $1.54 compared to $8.29 in Moscow; a fast food hamburger meal is $3.62 in Kolkata (Calcutta), India, versus $13.49 in Caracas, Venezuela, and a cinema ticket is $5.91 in Johannesburg, South Africa, compared to $20.10 in London, England. The cost of expatriate housing is typically the biggest expense for employers and it plays an important part in determining the rankings. The Russian capital of Moscow follows Luanda as the second most expensive city because of high costs for rental accommodation. A luxury two-bedroom unfurnished apartment rental for one month in Moscow is $4,600 a month or 14 times as much than Karachi. “Overall, Canadian cities moved down in the ranking this year as a result of a slight decrease of the Canadian dollar against the U.S. dollar,” says Luc Lalonde, principal with responsibility for Mercer’s information solutions business in Eastern Canada. “In addition, the prices of goods and services increased at a lower pace.” Vancouver, BC, at 64th, is the highest ranking Canadian city.