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By Duncan Mil

December 1, 2021 - Israel’s Tel Aviv tops the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Worldwide Cost of Living Survey for the first time, making it the most expensive city globally.

Tel Aviv climbed from fifth place last year, pushing Paris to second place with Singapore. Tel Aviv’s rise mainly reflects Israel’s soaring currency, the shekel, and price increases for around one-tenth of goods in the city, led by groceries and transport, in local-currency terms. Property prices have also risen, especially in residential areas.

The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) said prices for goods and services studied across cities had risen 3.5% year-on-year in local currency terms, compared with 1.9% last year. The inflation rate was the fastest recorded for the past five years. Higher oil prices boosted the price of unleaded petrol by 21%.

The Economist reports that Tel Aviv is a notably expensive place for alcohol and transport (both second place) compared with other cities. The city is the fifth most costly for personal care items and the sixth for recreation. It ranks in the top third for all ten of the WCLS’s major spending categories, increasing its index score by five points since last year.

The Worldwide Cost of Living is a twice-yearly survey conducted by the EIU that compares more than 400 individual prices across 200 products and services in 173 cities.

PUBLISHED: 01/12/2021; STORY: Graphic News; PICTURES: Getty Images