Here are the top 10 African cities with the highest cost of living

Abu Mubarik July 25, 2022
Mushin Market, Lagos-Nigeria. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Omoeko Media

The Russia-Ukraine conflict has ushered the globe into an unprecedented rising cost of living reminiscent of the great recession. The impact of conflict, among other factors, has negatively impacted the purchasing power of many workers.

The day-to-day expenses of basic household items like food, toiletries and other day-to-day expenses like rent, fuel and fees have skyrocketed across the world. A significant number of African countries are feeling the brunt the most, according to Mercer’s 2020 Cost of Living Survey.

Mercer used indicators such as currency fluctuations, cost inflation for goods and services, and instability of accommodation prices to compile the high cost of living in cities across the world.

The report also noted that the return of high inflation in the world has caused employees to reevaluate their salary potential, and work-life balance and compete for top talent.

The research reveals that Hong Kong tops the 2022 cost of living city ranking, followed by Zurich and Geneva in Switzerland. In Africa, Bangui in the Central African Republic comes first as the city with the highest cost of living. 

This is followed by Libreville (Gabon), Victoria (Seychelles), Djibouti (Djibouti) and Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of Congo) respectively. The rest are Lagos (Nigeria), Luanda (Angola), Dakar (Senegal), Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire) and Brazzaville (Republic of Congo) respectively.

“COVID-19 pandemic has created social and economic disruptions across the globe and Africa has not been an exception. We’re seeing a significant increase in the cost of living across cities and it’s important for organizations to reassess their mobility programs with a focus on the wellbeing of their employees,” said Didintle Kwape, Associate, Career Products at Mercer Africa.

The report said the figures for Mercer’s cost of living and rental accommodation cost comparisons were derived from a survey conducted in March 2020.  The survey includes over 400 cities throughout the world. The survey measured the comparative cost of more than 200 items in each location, including housing, transportation, food, clothing, household goods, and entertainment.

Here are the top African cities with the highest cost of living, according to Mercer

  1. Bangui in Central African Republic 
  2. Libreville (Gabon), 
  3. Victoria (Seychelles), 
  4. Djibouti (Djibouti)  
  5. Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of Congo) 
  6. Lagos (Nigeria)
  7. Luanda (Angola)
  8. Dakar (Senegal)
  9. Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire)
  10. Brazzaville (Republic of Congo)

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: July 25, 2022


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