Where Joburg and Cape Town rank in the world’s most-expensive cities
Cape Town is ranked the 170th most expensive city and Johannesburg the 177th out of 209 cities rated on how expensive they are for multinationals to post staff.
In its latest annual survey released on Tuesday, New York-based human resources group Mercer found Hong Kong takes first place as the most expensive city in 2018, followed by Tokyo and Zurich.
The survey found Africa is generally an expensive place for multinationals to post staff, with Angola’s capital Luanda ranking as the sixth most expensive city, and N’Djamena in Chad ranking eighth.
Luanda was ranked the world’s most expensive city in Mercer’s 2017 survey. Luanda’s drop from first to sixth spot was "due in part to the downward trend in the city’s housing market", Mercer said on its website.
The cheapest city to live in 2018 is Tashkent in Uzbekistan, followed by Tunis in Tunisia.
Cape Town tied with Bengaluru in India at 170th place.
"Cities in the US have dropped in the ranking due to a steady pickup of the European economy, which triggered a decline of the US dollar against other major currencies worldwide. New York dropped four places to rank 13, making it the most expensive US city," Mercer said.
"Overall, Western European cities have all risen in the rankings, a result of strong local currencies against the dollar and the cost of goods and services. In particular, cities in Germany experienced some of this year’s biggest surges in the ranking, with Frankfurt (68) and Berlin (71) jumping 49 spots while Munich (57) climbed 41 places.
"In the UK, Birmingham (128) went up 19 places from last year, Belfast (152) jumped 18 spots, and Aberdeen (134) climbed 12 places from its previous ranking. London jumped 10 spots to rank 19."