Cost of living in dear old Dublin is rising again

Economist magazine rank Irish capital 21st of 131 cities - up from 34th in early 2013


Dublin is getting dearer again and is now just outside the top 20 most expensive city in the world, according to the Worldwide Cost of Living survey which was published by the Economist Intelligence Unit this morning.

The survey compares over 400 individual prices across 160 products and services including food, drink, clothing, household supplies and personal care items, rents, transport, utility bills, private schools, domestic help and recreational costs in 131 cities across the globe.

Dublin was ranked number 21, up 13 places from the 34th spot it held this time last year. In 2012 EIU researchers said Dublin was the 30th most expensive city in the world while at the height of the boom in 2006 it was found to be 16th most expensive place to live.

Price rises and a stronger currency has seen Singapore has become the world’s most expensive city. It has been awarded the dubious honour at the expense of Tokyo, traditionally the world’s most expensive city. It has lost out as a result of a slide in the valuation of the Yen compared with a 40 per cent appreciation in the value of the Singapore dollar over the last decade.

As well as Singapore and Tokyo - which falls to joint 6th place in the ranking - currency appreciation has cemented the position of Sydney which is in fifth place and Melbourne which is one place below that.

Paris rose six places to become the world’s second most expensive city, reflecting recovering European prices and currencies. Oslo, Zurich, Geneva and Copenhagen also made up the European presence among the ten most expensive. London was ranked 15th.

“Improving sentiment in structurally expensive European cities combined with the continued rise of Asian hubs means that these two regions continue to supply most of the world’s most expensive cities,” said the editor of the report Jon Copestake. “But Asian cities also continue to make up many of the worlds cheapest, especially in the Indian subcontinent.”

Caracas adds a Latin American flavour to the ten most expensive, but its position is largely due to the imposition of an artificially high official exchange rate. If alternative black market rates were applied Caracas would comfortably become the world’s cheapest city in which to live.

Beyond Caracas the most expensive city in the Americas is New York in 26th place, with the US city becoming more expensive than Vancouver in Canada over the last year.

Mumbai in India offers the best value for money and is joined among the cheapest locations by South Asian cities such as New Delhi, Karachi in Pakistan and Kathmandu in Nepal. Economic instability relating to the civil war and the collapse of the Syrian Pound has placed Damascus among the world’s cheapest cities, although local price inflation will have been impacted by supply issues.