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据伦敦咨询公司ECA国际近期公布的调查显示,由于受到货币汇率波动和通货膨胀的影响,外籍人士在北京的生活支出首度超过香港,并且在全球生活支出排行中由去年的第101位上升至今年的第31位。在港币对美元汇率波动及通货膨胀扩大下,香港的货物与服务花费在过去两个月中,从比伦敦低10%,上涨到比伦敦高出10%。在全球生活支出排行中排在首位的是安哥拉首都罗安达,第二到第五名则全数为日本城市,依次是:东京、横滨、名古屋和神户。  

  Rising costs pushed Beijing up to 31st place from 101st a year ago and Shanghai to 35th place from 106th, according to the survey by London-based ECA International (来源:英语麦当劳-英语杂志 http://www.EnglishCN.com)

  Beijing has for the first time become more expensive than Hong Kong for foreigners as a result of surging inflation on the mainland and appreciation of the yuan, a survey showed on Thursday.

  Rising costs pushed Beijing up to 31st place from 101st a year ago and Shanghai to 35th place from 106th, according to the survey by London-based ECA International, which advises companies globally on international assignments.

  China's consumer price index, the main gauge of inflation, was 6.7 percent for the first 10 months, after it fell to 4 percent in October from 7.1 percent in January.

  The Chinese currency has risen 20 percent against the US dollar since 2005, when the government de-pegged it from the greenback to link it with a basket of foreign currencies. But its rising trend has stalled recently as it continued to fall on Thursday for the fifth straight day, trading at 6.8837 per US dollar in the over-the-counter market.

  Hong Kong fell in the rankings to 97th spot in the latest survey, which compares a basket of 125 consumer goods and services commonly purchased by expatriates in more than 370 locations worldwide.

  Volatile exchange rates stemming from the global financial crisis also mean London and Seoul are no longer among the top 10 most expensive locations for expatriates.

  Meanwhile, Japanese cities have returned to upper end of the league table.

  London is now ranked 72nd in the global listing of expat locations while Seoul takes 90th place following their currencies' sharp depreciation in the past year.

  Angola's capital Luanda remains the costliest place for foreigners. That is mainly because certain items and brands typically required by expatriates are not readily available and therefore very expensive.

  Moscow has replaced Oslo as Europe's most costly location while a strong yen has made Tokyo the second-most expensive city in the world, up from 13th position a year ago.

  A 48 percent depreciation in the South Korean won means goods and services in Seoul - which a year ago were 5 percent more expensive than in Tokyo - are now 40 percent cheaper than prices in the Japanese capital, ECA said.

  Such sharp currency swings create a challenge for companies remunerating expat packages, most of which are based on an expat's home currency, says ECA.

  "Companies which split pay between the employee's home and host countries will be much better equipped to ride out the current currency volatility," said Lee Quane, Asia general manager of ECA International.

  The survey does not cover the cost of accommodation, school fees or car purchases, which ECA says are usually compensated for separately in expatriate packages.

  Manhattan shot up to 20th place - tying with Paris - from 54th a year ago as a rebounding US dollar made American locations, and locations with currencies tied to the dollar such as Hong Kong, much more expensive.

  "In the past two months, goods and services in Hong Kong have swung from being 10 percent cheaper than in London to being almost 10 percent more expensive," said Quane.

  The cost of living in Taipei and Singapore has also increased, helped by rising inflation.

  While a handful of African cities featured in the top 20, Africa is also home to the cheapest location for foreigners, Maseru in Lesotho.

  The latest survey was conducted in September but November exchange rates were used in the calculations. 

 
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