Beijing and Shanghai are rapidly moving up the list of most expensive cities in Asia for international employees, surpassing Singapore and Hong Kong, according to a study by human resources consultancy ECA International.
China’s capital has risen to fifth from eighth in a similar survey last year, while Shanghai has moved to sixth from ninth, ECA said.
Singapore has fallen from sixth to eighth position in the rankings of the most expensive Asian cities for expatriate workers, while Hong Kong moved to ninth from seventh.
Tokyo remains the most expensive city in Asia and in the world, said ECA, whose study compares a basket of consumer goods and services commonly purchased by assignees in 400 locations around the world. Certain living costs such as accommodation, utilities, car purchase and school fees are not included in the survey.
“The rate of increase in the prices of goods and services commonly purchased by assignees in China has gone up sharply in the past year,” said Lee Quane, Regional director, Asia for ECA International.
The strengthening of the yuan against other currencies is also one of the reasons that the cost of posting employees to China has gone up more than other cities such as Singapore.
Globally, ECA’s study found that Norwegian capital Oslo was the second most expensive city for international assignees, while Beijing ranks 20th, Shanghai 26th and Singapore came in