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Singapore’s the best place to live in Asia

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As the only Asian city in the top 30 best places to live in the world, Singapore has retained its standing as a world-class metropolis for locals and expatriates.

According to Mercer’s 2014 Quality of Living report, the island nation achieved first place in Asia, and was ranked 25th among the 223 global cities surveyed in the report.

The four Japanese cities of Tokyo (43), Kobe (47), Yokohama (49), and Osaka (57) made up the Asian top five, respectively.

“Asia has a bigger range of quality of living standard amongst its cities than any other region,” Slagin Parakatil, senior researcher at Mercer, said.

The aim of the survey is to help multinational companies and other employers compensate employees fairly when placing them on international assignments by providing a bird’s eye view of the daily lives of expatriate employees, their families and local residents. These include factors such as political instability, high crime levels, and elevated air pollution.

“In a world economy that is becoming more globalised, cities beyond the traditional financial and business centres are working to improve their quality of living so they can attract more foreign companies,” Parakatil said.

The report ranked Vienna as the best place to live in the world, followed by Zurich and Auckland in second and third place respectively.

Vancouver (5) was the highest ranking city in North America, while Dubai (73) achieved the top spot in the Middle East and Africa, while the city of Pointe-à-Pitre (69) in Guadeloupe topped the Central and South America list.

“This year’s survey recognises so-called ‘second tier’ or ‘emerging’ cites and points to a few examples from around the world. These cities have been investing massively in their infrastructure and attracting foreign direct investments by providing incentives such as tax, housing, or entry facilities. Emerging cities will become major players that traditional financial centres and capital cities will have to compete with,” he added.

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