Executive Education

World’s 50 Most Expensive Cities, 2017: Luanda, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Zurich, Singapore Tops

This may come as a surprise to many people, Angolan capital Luanda has surpassed Hong Kong as world’s most expensive city for expatriates, according to Mercer’s latest cost of living survey.

The most expensive city is Luanda (1), the capital of the oil-rich Angola, followed by Hong Kong, Tokyo, Zurich, and Sigapore, says Mercer’s 23rd annual Cost of Living Survey. Seoul, Geneva Shanghai, New York City, and Bern comprise the rest of the top ten.

New York City rose to 9th from 11th last year as Brexit-battered London plunged to 30th from 17th.

The survey compared cost of goods and security in various cities for expats, and the first mention of an American city was New York City, which came in at 9.

The next American cities barely scraped into the top 25, with SAN FRANCISCO coming in at 22, and LOS ANGELES at 24.

The 50 most expensive cities in the world for expatriates, 2017

  1. Luanda, Angola
  2. Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  3. Tokyo, Japan
  4. Zurich, Switzerland
  5. Singapore, Singapore
  6. Seoul, South Korea
  7. Geneva, Switzerland
  8. Shanghai, China
  9. New York City, United States
  10. Bern, Switzerland
  11. BEIJING, China
  12. TIANJIN, China
  13. SHENZHEN, China
  14. MOSCOW, Russia (tie)
  15. VICTORIA, Seychelles (tie)
  16. NDJAMENA, Chad
  17. TEL AVIV, Israel
  18. KINSHASA, Dem. Rep. of the Congo
  19. GUANGZHOU, China
  20. DUBAI, United Arab Emirates
  21. OSAKA, Japan
  22. SAN FRANCISCO, United States
  23. ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates
  24. LOS ANGELES, United States
  25. SYDNEY, Australia (tie)
  26. TAIPEI, Taiwan (tie)
  27. SAO PAULO, Brazil
  28. COPENHAGEN, Denmark
  29. LAGOS, Nigeria
  30. LONDON, United Kingdom
  31. BRAZZAVILLE, Congo
  32. CHICAGO, United States
  33. NANJING, China (tie)
  34. LIBREVILLE, Gabon (tie)
  35. NAGOYA, Japan
  36. ST.PETERSBURG, Russia (tie)
  37. HONOLULU, United States (tie)
  38. DHAKA, Bangladesh
  39. WASHINGTON, United States
  40. BUENOS AIRES, Argentina
  41. MIAMI, United States
  42. SHENYANG, China (tie)
  43. NOUMEA, New Caledonia (tie)
  44. ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire
  45. QINGDAO, China
  46. MELBOURNE, Australia (tie)
  47. CHENGDU, China (tie)
  48. OSLO, Norway (tie)
  49. DIBOUTI, Djibouti
  50. PERTH, Australia

he survey includes 209 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost of more than 200 items in each location, including housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods, and entertainment.

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Prof. Dr. Amarendra Bhushan Dhiraj
Prof. Dr. Amarendra Bhushan Dhiraj is a media and technology executive, macro-economist, strategic thinker, chair, and chief executive officer of the CEOWORLD magazine, one of the world’s most influential and recognized global news publications. Under Dr. Amarendra's leadership, CEOWORLD magazine has become the world's most iconic news organization, whose rigorous reporting and unsurpassed storytelling connect with millions of business leaders daily. Additionally, he serves as the chair and founding member of the CEOWORLD magazine’s Inclusion Advisory Board.

In his current role, he counsels and collaborates with c-suite executives of large multinational corporations, helping them drive change in their companies to improve their competitiveness. Dr. Amarendra has extensive experience in serving on numerous boards. He leads and supports a globally dispersed team of columnists, correspondents, editors, journalists, reporters, researchers, and industry analysts.

He received his Ph.D. in Finance and Banking from the European Global School, Paris, France. He also received his Doctoral Degree in Chartered Accountancy from the European International University Paris, France, and a Doctorate in Business Administration from Kyiv National University of Technologies and Design (KNUTD), Ukraine. He earned his Master of Business Administration degree in Finance and his master’s degree in Chartered Accountancy (CA) from European Global School Paris. Dr. Amarendra also holds a Master of Business Administration degree in International Relations and Affairs from the American University of Athens, Alabama, United States.

As CEO, he transformed the CEOWORLD magazine into a highly efficient, digital-first, profitable enterprise. Today, CEOWORLD magazine is a standard bearer for modern responsible journalism. Dr. Amarendra retains a strong desire to continuously improve his skills and abilities and believes that the first step to being a true leader is to inspire others to lead with you.


Prof. Dr. Amarendra Bhushan Dhiraj is the CHAIR, CEO, AND EDITORIAL DIRECTOR of the CEOWORLD magazine. Connect with him through LinkedIn.