JERUSALEM (VINnews) — Tel Aviv has been named the world’s most expensive city to live in, according to the ranking of the Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Cost of Living survey.
Last year, Tel Aviv was the fifth-most expensive city in the world to live in.
But the EIU’s latest report says the Israeli city is now the costliest on the planet.
The reasons for this are varied. Firstly, the shekel has been very strong over the past year, pushing local prices up when they’re converted into dollars.
The Israeli consumer index rose by only 1.6% but this number does not take into account real estate prices, which shot up by 10% over the past year.
Moreover some goods underwent steep rises in recent months, including groceries, transport (with gasoline prices rising by 21% over the past year) and alcohol. VAT in Israel is twice the accepted levels in European countries, driving up the price of goods even more.
The coronavirus pandemic has also been cited as a cause of price hikes due to shutdowns disrupting supply chains and raising prices on various goods.
The EIU survey works by comparing the prices of 200 products and services — such as food prices, utility bills and transport costs — across 173 cities globally.
Those prices are converted into the US dollar as a central currency and weighted individually so they can be compared easily.
Tel Aviv is followed by Paris and Singapore which were tied in second place, followed by Zurich, Hong Kong, New York, Geneva, Copenhagen, Los Angeles and Osaka in the top ten spots.