Swiss banking corporation Julius Baer Group has named Singapore at the top of their list of the 10 most expensive cities in the world. Published on 20 June 2023, the rankings show Shanghai and Hong Kong at the second and third spots.
With the podium spots occupied by major Asian cities, the region continues to reign in the luxury lifestyle sphere by attracting high-net-worth individuals with upscale residences and work opportunities.
Here are the top 10 cities and what makes them so expensive
The list is based on the analysis of individuals with net worths over USD 1 billion (SGD 1,341,375) between February and March 2023.
Other cities on the Julius Baer report
For the first time since 2021, Singapore has dethroned Shanghai to grab the top spot. The Lion City clocked in at fifth in 2022. While it is followed by Shanghai and Hong Kong, Taipei is the only other Asian country to feature on the list, at eighth position.
Meanwhile, Europe, the Middle East and African (EMEA) cities saw a drop in their rankings. London, which occupied the second spot in 2022, now appears fourth. Monaco, which climbed down from the fourth spot to sixth in 2022, continues to hold onto it in 2023. Dubai — next on the list — is the only Middle Eastern city to make it to the top 10 expensive cities in the world.
American cities New York and Miami have bagged the fifth and tenth spots respectively, while Brazil’s metropolis São Paulo made a significant foray at number nine.
What makes Singapore the most expensive city in the world?
“The city ranking is based on the Julius Baer Lifestyle Index, which analyses the cost of a basket of goods and services representative of ‘living well’ in 25 cities around the world. This provides an overview of the relative cost of maintaining a high-net-worth lifestyle in various major urban centres,” says the Julius Baer Group.
For a long time, the Singapore government has tried to make the city-state a haven for luxury living. One of the first countries to open borders during the pandemic, it had nearly 1,500 family offices by the end of 2022.
The report also mentions, “High living standards and ballooning demands on local infrastructure mean life here does not come cheap: residential property is in extremely high demand, and punitively taxed cars and essential health insurance are 133 per cent and 109 per cent more expensive than the global average respectively.”
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(Hero and feature image credit: Jisun Han/ @hanzlog/ Unsplash)
This story first appeared on Prestige Online Singapore