AFRICANGLOBE – Luanda, the capital of Angola is the world’s most expensive city for foreign workers, according to a study by US consulting firm, Mercer Group.
A statement published this week on the company’s website says Luanda regained the top spot in an annual survey of the most expensive cities for expatriates, followed by Moscow (Russia) and Tokyo (Japan).
The survey by Mercer Consulting Group is published annually to help companies assess compensation allowances for expatriate workers.
It compared the cost of over 200 items in 214 cities, including housing, food, transport and entertainment.
After being overtaken by Tokyo in last year’s survey, oil-booming Luanda returned to the top ranking this year.
“Despite being one of Africa’s major oil producers, Angola is a relatively poor country yet expensive for expatriates since imported goods can be costly,” Barb Marder, a senior partner at Mercer, said in a statement.
Mr Marder further explained that “in addition, finding secure living accommodations that meet the standards of expatriates can be challenging and quite costly.”
Moscow’s high costs for rentals and imported goods accounted for its second-place finish, with a luxury unfurnished two-bedroom apartment in the Russian capital costing $4,600 (3,480 euros) a month and a cup of coffee $8.29 (6.27 euros), Mercer said.
Tokyo was the third most-expensive city in the survey, followed by Chad’s capital N’Djamena, Singapore, Hong Kong, Geneva, Zurich, Bern and Sydney, making up the top ten.
Mercer’s analysis is focused on companies that post their workers abroad and bear the costs of doing so by way of compensation.
Accommodation is usually the highest bill to be paid, and in this respect Luanda is off the scale: To rent a two-bedroom unfurnished luxury apartment costs $6,500 as compared to $2,551 in Sydney, for example.
The worsening economic crisis in Angola’s former colonial oppressor Portugal- has seen many Portuguese citizens fleeing into the Southern African country.
The country’s booming oil industry has attracted many expatriates leading to increase in goods and services.
Angola is Africa’s second biggest oil producer. It is second only to Nigeria.
By: Anthony Sedzro