If you have been a frequent reader of studies that look at the most expensive countries in the world, none of the 2010 survey results may be a surprise to you.
But for the remaining 99% of the universe prepare to be shocked.Tokyo has become the world’s most expensive city, rising from number 2 last year. To be fair, this is a position it has held before, and yes this is not that surprising when you consider how much the Yen has strengthened post-Financial Crisis.
Oslo in number 2 spot? Yes that makes sense too, since oil has made Norway one of the richest countries in Europe.
But Luanda, Angola, is the third most expensive city in the world? How many of you can even place Luanda on the world map?
What about Libreville in Gabon (#13), Abuja in Nigeria (#18) or Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo (#23)?
The world is changing in many unexpected ways.
True, Europe with 12 cities in the Top 30, commands 40% of entries. But most of this is either Scandinavia (two from Norway together with Copenhagen, Helsinki and Stockholm), or the four cities from Switzerland that occupy spots 9 – 12.
London doesn’t even make the grade, and New York drops from 18th to 29th as the pound and US dollar get battered.
Japan dominates the top rankings, with four of the seven most expensive cities, and the Asia-Pacific as a whole takes 7 of the 30 cities, or 23%, including Sydney and Canberra from Australia.
Another surprise is that neither Singapore or Hong Kong make the grade, with China and India being entirely absent from the list as well.
Africa claims 5 spots or 17% of the top, while Israel joins the ranks for the first time, with both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in the rankings.
Read the full rankings in The World’s 30 Most Expensive Cities at EconomyWatch.com