The capital of South Sudan, Juba, has been named the most expensive city for expatriates.
This ranking was calculated by looking at inflation and exchange rates, and comparing the prices of a number of items and services like-for-like, to see exactly how expensive it would be to maintain the same standard of living in the new country.
The ranking is intended to help companies estimate the costs of employees living abroad of international assignment. For a city like Zurich, Switzerland, the high cost of living in the city and the unfavorable exchange rate are the biggest factors contributing to its high ranking.
However, for a city like Juba — which is in the poorer, newly formed country of South Sudan — the markup on the items an international employee might request or need is a lot higher. There has also been a flood of foreign aid groups, international diplomats establishing embassies, and oil companies bringing in international workers, driving the prices of these imported goods up. Juba has shot up to the number one spot after sitting at number nine on last year’s list.