Mumbai does it again! The financial capital of India is the most expensive Indian city for for the expatriates to live in, while it stands at 80th position globally, more expensive than cities like Seattle (83), Frankfurt (88), Canberra (98), Berlin (100) and Istanbul (101).
New Delhi is the second most expensive Indian city, while Chennai and Bangalore remain on third and fourth positions, respectively, whereas Kolkata stands at fifth, according to Mercer's 2016 Cost of Living Survey.
The survey also highlighted that New Delhi and Bangalore have become more expensive out of these five cities, with their rankings going up as compared to last year.
Bangalore has witnessed the highest jump in ranking due to an increase in prices, especially on items pertaining to food and personal care and also on surge in transportation costs, which include taxi fares, cost of auto and running costs. Inflation, in Bangalore, has also moved from 3.27 per cent to 6.08 per cent, during this period.
"Pricing, currency stability, inflation in Indian cities has a direct impact on the cost of expatriation for Indian multinationals. Costs of goods and services shift with inflation and currency volatility, in home and host cities, making overseas assignment costs sometimes greater and sometimes smaller," said said Ruchika Pal, India Practice Leader, Global Mobility at Mercer.
On the international front, Hong Kong topped the list as the most expensive city for expatriates both in Asia and globally, while Luanda, Angola is on the second position. Zurich and Singapore remain in third and fourth positions, respectively.
Shanghai (7), Geneva (8), N'Djamena (9), and Beijing (10) also appear in the top 10 of Mercer's costliest cities. Among the least costliest cities are Windhoek (209), Cape Town (208), and Bishkek (207).
Cities in the United States have climbed up in the ranking due to strengthening of the US dollar. San Francisco (26) and Los Angeles (27) climbed eleven and nine places, respectively, from last year while Seattle (83) jumped twenty-three places. Zurich remains the most costly European city while Tel Aviv remains the most expensive city in the Middle East.
Mercer's survey is termed as one of the world's most comprehensive, and is widely used by MNCs and governments to devise compensation strategies for their expatriate employees.
The survey includes over 375 cities throughout the world, and New York City is used as the base city for all comparisons and US dollar is considered a mark to compare all currency movements.
This year's ranking includes 209 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost on the basis of housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods, and entertainment.