UAE’s affordable cost of living attracts global talent - GulfToday

UAE’s affordable cost of living attracts global talent


Picture used for illustrative purpose only.

Sajjad Ahmad, Deputy Business Editor

The cost of living in the UAE is becoming more affordable for expatriates compared to 2020 amidst the push to attract critical talent, more remote workers and freelancers, revealed a survey on Tuesday.

Dubai has moved staggering 19 places down from its position as the 23rd most expensive city in 2020 to 42nd in 2021 and Abu Dhabi is down by 17 places from 39th most expensive city in 2020 to 56th in 2021, according to the result of The Cost of Living survey by Mercer.

The results reflect the UAE’s commitment to implementing policies that supported in mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with its drive to attract top global talent to the Emirates.

Both Dubai and Abu Dhabi are now cheaper for expatriates which increasing the attractiveness and affordability of the UAE for global talent on the back of cheaper real estate, deflation and dollar movements.

This makes the UAE attractive from a cost perspective compared to some of the global hubs for digital and creative talent like London (19), San Francisco (26), Paris (34), Dublin (40).

Commenting on the Middle East findings of the survey, Vladimir Vrzhovski, Global Mobility Practice Lead, Middle East and Africa said, “A drive to enable remote and flexible working is driving mobility and cementing the UAE’s reputation as a destination of choice for expatriate workers.”

Across the Middle East and Africa, the most notable increase in the cost of living for expatriates as compared to 2020 is Beirut, which rose 42 places as compared to 2020, to rank as the third most expensive city on a global scale.

The hyperinflation in Lebanon has been caused by its currency collapsing after political and financial crises.

Among other cities in Middle East Riyadh (29) moved two spots up compared to last year.
N’Djamena (13), Lagos (19) and Libreville (20) are first, second and third costliest cities in Africa for international employees.

“Cost of living has always been a factor for international mobility planning, but the pandemic has added a whole new layer of complexity, as well as long-term implications related to health and safety of employees, remote working and flexibility policies, among other considerations,” said Ilya Bonic, Career President and Head of Mercer Strategy.

More than half of the top 10 most expensive cities are located in Asia.

Ashgabat climbed one position in this year’s ranking, making it the costliest city for international employees, both in Asia and globally.

Hong Kong (2), Tokyo (4), Shanghai (6), Singapore (7) and Beijing (9) followed suit.

Mumbai (78) is India’s most expensive city but dropped 18 places in this year’s ranking due to a relatively weak Indian rupee in comparison with other cities in the ranking.

Related articles