Nigeria’s commercial nerve centre, Lagos, has been ranked the second cheapest city in the world for expatriates.
According to a report by the Economic Intelligence Unit on Monday, Lagos which fell 16 places to 132nd place on the world priciest cities index joins Kazakhstan’s Almaty at the bottom.
The report said, “Although Nigeria has been attracting significant interest and investment in recent years, the fall in global oil prices has driven a collapse in the value of the Nigerian naira, which pushed down relative pricing, despite strong local inflation. The relative cost of living in Lagos has more than halved since 2008, which might signal renewed interest from foreign investors, with price levels so low by international standards. “
The Worldwide Cost of Living 2017 report saw Asian cities take five of the top ten spots, thanks to a sustained recovery in the strength of the Japanese yen that propelled Tokyo and Osaka back into the top ten, alongside Singapore and Seoul.
Singapore was ranked the most expensive city in the world for expatriates for the fourth consecutive year.
Western Europe accounted for a further four cities, with stalwarts Zurich and Geneva in third and seventh position respectively.
Paris, the only Eurozone city, came in eighth position and the Danish capital Copenhagen, which pegs its currency to the Euro, rounded off the top ten.
New York was the lone North American representative, falling to ninth position owing to a slight weakening of the U.S. dollar, which also affected the position of other US cities.
In spite of topping the ranking, “Singapore still offers relative value in some categories, especially compared with its regional peers,” the report said.
It remains significantly cheaper for categories such as household goods, personal care and domestic help, but is still the most expensive place in the world to buy and run a car, the report found.
In contrast, Seoul, Tokyo and Osaka were the three most expensive places in the world to buy staple goods.
The Worldwide Cost of Living is a twice-yearly survey that compares more than 400 individual prices across 160 products and services that include food, rent, transport and recreational costs, among others.