Oslo beaten to priciest city title once again

The Local Norway
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Oslo beaten to priciest city title once again
Oslo - Photo: Simen Schikulski

For the second time this year, Oslo has lost its customary top spot as the world's most expensive city, after Singapore and Paris beat it in a new list put together by the Economist Intelligence Unit.


"Singapore’s rising price prominence has been steady rather than spectacular," the report's editor Jon Copestake, wrote in his introduction.  "However, over the last decade a 40% currency
appreciation, coupled with solid price inflation, has consistently pushed Singapore up the ranking." 
He explained that European cities such as Paris, Oslo, Zurich, Geneva and Copenhagen, had all climbed up the ranking over the past year, as the financial crisis eases in the continent. 
"Europe has been the subject of renewed optimism for the coming year, with confidence picking up in some markets and declines easing in others," he wrote. "This, combined with currency weakness in Japan, has made European cities relatively more expensive once more." 
Tokyo, which topped the EIU's list last year, fell down the sixth place ranking on the back of a falling yen. 
This helped Oslo climb into third place from fourth last year.
The Norwegian capital beat Singapore on the price of 1kg of bread ($5.91 vs $3.36), on a packet of 20 cigarettes ($15.44 vs $9.55), and on a litre of unleaded petrol ($2.41 to $1.73), but, surprisingly given its relatively draconian alcohol laws, was a cheaper place to buy a bottle of wine ($17.13 vs $25.04). 
Again surprisingly, Paris came out as the most expensive place for bread, with a 1kg of tasty baguette setting Parisians back a startling $8.44. 
Singapore's place at the top was secured by the exorbitant cost of owning a car. 
"Car costs have very high related certificate of entitlement fees attached to them, which makes Singapore significantly more expensive than any other location when it comes to running a car," says the report. "As a result, transport costs in Singapore are almost three times higher than in New York. In addition, as a city-state with very few natural resources to speak of, Singapore is reliant on other countries for energy and water supplies, making it the third most expensive destination for utility costs."
A similar index, released in January by the cost of living comparison company Expatistan, ranked Oslo in second place after London, citing soaring rents and property prices in the British capital.  
For its rankings the EIU checked over 400 prices in 131 cities, from consumer products to services such as private schools and rents. 
The 10 most expensive:
1 Singapore
2 Paris
3 Oslo
4 Zurich
5 Sydney
6 Caracas
6 Geneva, Switzerland
6 Melbourne
6 Tokyo
7 Copenhagen
The 10 cheapest:
122 Riyadh (Saudi Arabia)
123 Jeddah (Saudi Arabia)
124 Panama City (Panama)
124 Bucharest (Romania)
126 Algiers (Algeria)
127 Damascus (Syria)
127 Kathmandu (Nepal)
129 New Delhi (India)
130 Karachi (Pakistan)
131 Mumbai (India)



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