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Thread: Expats rank S'pore as world's best place to live

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    Default Expats rank S'pore as world's best place to live

    http://www.straitstimes.com/Free/Sto...ry_261111.html

    July 25, 2008

    Expats rank S'pore as world's best place to live

    Poll of foreigners in 49 locations puts the Republic ahead of US, HK

    By Jessica Cheam


    COMING UP TOPS: Singapore takes the top spot for having quality accomodation and ranks No. 2 for luxury living. -- PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

    SINGAPORE has emerged as the best place to live in the world in a survey of more than 2,000 expatriates by HSBC Bank.

    The Republic also ranked first for quality of accommodation and second for luxury living.

    Its closest rival, Hong Kong, was ranked fifth overall, though it took top spot in terms of an expat's ability to earn and save.

    The United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the United States came in as joint second-best overall destinations, with Belgium next in the rankings.

    HSBC's Expat Explorer survey - a first for the bank - interviewed 2,155 expats across 49 countries and territories to rank places based on living standards, the ability to earn and save, a country's popularity, and the level of luxury experienced.

    HSBC's survey, released yesterday, comes after human resources consultancy Mercer ranked the Republic the fifth most expensive Asian city for expats - up a notch from a previous survey.

    ECA International, also a human resources consultancy, ranked Singapore as the best place for Asian expatriates to live worldwide earlier this year.

    In a separate survey, it found that Singapore has become a more expensive place for expats to live, but that it is still cheaper than Hong Kong.

    The Republic jumped 17 places to land at the 114th spot in a global survey of the costliest cities for expatriates, on the back of higher inflation and a stronger Singapore dollar in the past year.

    But despite rising living costs, especially in housing, Singapore remains competitive with its Asian neighbours such as Tokyo, Seoul and Hong Kong, and other global financial centres such as London, said Mercer.

    HSBC's head of consumer banking in Singapore, Ms Wendy Lim, said there are an estimated 300,000 expats residing here.

    The safe environment and relatively low taxes make it 'an ideal location for expats to grow and protect their savings and investments', she said.

    Other countries such as Britain and France scored poorly as expat destinations in the survey, especially on accommodation and luxury. The UAE was the most luxurious destination, followed by Singapore and India.

    Project manager Pham Nguyen Hung, 34, a French-Vietnamese expat living in Singapore, said he was not surprised at the survey results.

    Singapore, US cities such as San Francisco and New York, and Hong Kong are among his top picks.

    'It's hard to compare cities directly, because each of them offers different lifestyles. But I agree Singapore has quite a high quality of life, and its accommodation standards are among the best,' he said.

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    http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/sub/...89242,00.html?

    Published July 25, 2008

    Expats living in S'pore just loving it: poll

    By ARTHUR SIM


    SINGAPORE has been ranked the best place in the world to live in, based on a poll of expatriates.

    The Expat Explorer survey for HSBC Bank International revealed that, as well as being top overall, expats rate Singapore best for quality of accommodation and second in terms of luxury living.

    The survey was conducted between February and April, with data analysis conducted by Freshminds. It looked at a range of topics relevant to expats' lives, including living standards, an expat's ability to earn and save, a country's popularity and the level of luxury experienced.

    On luxury, countries were rated on a number of categories, including access to private healthcare, access to more than one property, and ability to own a pool and to employ staff (such as cleaners).

    Across the 11 categories of perceived luxuries, on average, expats reported an increase in eight of these factors, with employing staff ranked as the highest increase.

    The United Arab Emirates was the most luxurious destination, with expats enjoying increases in 10 of the 11 categories, followed by Singapore and India.

    The UK was ranked the least luxurious with decreases recorded in nine of the 11 luxuries.

    The survey polled 2,155 expats in more than 49 countries. However, only countries with at least 30 respondents were analysed in the league tables.

    Accommodation is a key concern of expats and almost three-quarters of expats living in Singapore said that the quality of their accommodation had improved since moving away from home, the highest amount recorded in the study.

    This was followed by those living in the United States and Belgium.

    The UK was identified as the most expensive expat location for accommodation, with over three-quarters of expats living there revealing that their living costs had increased.

    In terms of remuneration, expats in Hong Kong (ranked fifth overall) have the world's highest salaries, with almost half earning more than £pounds;100,000 (S$271,000) per annum.

    It was found that Europe is a popular destination overall in terms of the length of stay. More than three-quarters of expats now living in the Netherlands have been there for three or more years, followed by Germany and Spain. Hong Kong and Singapore were ranked fifth and sixth respectively.

    HSBC head of consumer banking (Singapore) Wendy Lim estimates that there are over 300,000 expatriates residing in Singapore. She said: 'Singapore's safe, tax-efficient environment makes it an ideal location for expatriates to grow and protect their savings and investments.'

    Singapore is home to one of HSBC's five offshore banking centres around the world, the others being Hong Kong, Dubai, New Jersey and Miami.

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