The 23rd Cost of Living Survey carried out by Mercer, the world’s largest human resource consulting firm, found that African, Asian, and European cities dominated the 2017 list of most expensive locations for working abroad. According to the survey, Lagos ranked 13th while Abuja ranked 20th in 2016. Capital city of Angola, Luanda, however, ranked first globally moving up from second place and taking over from Hong Kong as the world’s most expensive city. The survey attributed cost of goods and security as factors that determined the cost of living in Luanda. Other African cities that ranked high reflected high living costs and prices of goods for expatriate employees. They include Victoria, Seychelles in the 14th position, N’djamena, Chad in the 16th position and Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo ranked 18th. The least expensive African cities include Gaborone, Botswana in the 196th position; Cape Town, South Africa ranking 199th and Blantyre, Malawi ranking 205th. Windhoek, Namibia ranked 206 while Tunis, Tunisia ranked 209 and was found to be the least expensive country globally. In Europe, three cities remained in the top 10 list of most expensive cities for expatriates, which included Zurich, Geneva and Bern which ranked fourth, seventh and 10th respectively. Moscow ranked 14th and London ranked 30th position and the German cities of Munich, Frankfurt and Berlin dropped significantly ranking 98, 117 and 120 respectively. Also, five of the top 10 expensive cities in the ranking were in Asia; Hong Kong ranked second and was found to be the most expensive city in the region as a result of its currency pegged to the US dollar, which drove up the cost of accommodations locally. Others are Tokyo, Singapore, Seoul and Shanghai which ranked third, fifth, sixth and eighth respectively. Nathalie Constantin-Métral, Principal at Mercer responsible for compiling the survey ranking, explained that the majority of Chinese cities fell in the ranking due to the weakening of the Chinese yuan against the U.S. dollar. India, Mumbai ranked 57, moving up 25 places due to its rapid economic growth, inflation on the goods and services basket and a stable currency against the U.S. Dollar.

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