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Three Swiss cities among most expensive for expats

11th June 2009, Comments0 comments

Geneva, Zurich and Basel remain in the top 10 most expensive cities for expat workers, according to a new survey.

Luanda -- Angola's capital Luanda has again been rated the most expensive city in the world for expat workers, followed by Tokyo, according to a survey published on Wednesday, while the Swiss cities of Geneva, Zurich and Basel all make the top 10.

The latest Cost of Living Survey by human resources consultancy ECA International saw Luanda maintain top spot on the world priciest locations for foreigners, while Maseru in the small mountain state Lesotho was the cheapest.

The next three cities in the ranking after Luanda and Tokyo were all in Japan--Nagoya, Yokohama and Kobe--according to the report.

Oil rich Angola's has enjoyed an unprecedented economic boom since a 27-year civil war ended in 2002 which has attracted an influx of foreign workers.

The country's war-damaged industry and poor infrastructure means the bulk of food, construction materials and other goods have to be imported, driving up costs.

Decent Luanda apartments with water and electricity go for upwards of 15,000 dollars (10,700 euros) a month, a basic meal out can top 100 dollars and imported European cheese sells for over 15 dollars a piece.

The high prices sit incongruously next to the rest of Angola's poverty with two thirds of the population living on less than two dollars a day.

Maintaining their position in the top ten were Copenhagen in Denmark, Oslo in Norway and the Swiss cities of Geneva, Zurich and Basel.

ECA's cost of living data, conducted twice a year, compares a selection of 125 consumer goods and services in over 370 locations worldwide.

AFP / Expatica

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