Singapore Ranked #1 for Best Quality of Life in Asia - report by Singapore company
The 2010 ‘Quality of Living’ survey by Mercer Human Resource Consulting reveals that Singapore offers
the best quality of life in the Asian region.
Singapore has retained its #1 ranking for offering the best quality of living in Asia. The quality of living
survey conducted by Mercer Human Resource Consulting assessed 221 major cities of the world on
parameters such as socio-political environment, economic environment, natural environment, housing,
health-care, cultural environment, recreation, schooling, public services, and transportation. Singapore’s
overall ranking is #28, while other Asian cities lagged behind. Japan was the only other Asian country to
have ranked in the Top 50 – Tokyo (40), Kobe (41), and Yokohama (41). Hong Kong, Singapore’s arch
rival falls way behind and is ranked #71. The main reason behind Hong Kong’s low ranking is its infamous
The Mercer Quality of Life survey is an important one as it enables governments and MNCs to calculate fair
and consistent expatriate allowances. According to a BusinessWeek report Hong Kong is 5 points above
the level at which Mercer says hardship allowances should be paid to workers to relocate. A 10% hardship
allowance is suggested for expats relocating to Mumbai or Beijing.
Today, as an increasing number of global businesses are turning towards setting up a business
presence in Asia. Needless to say, this will also lead to relocation of foreign business professionals and
entrepreneurs. One aspect that is often taken into consideration is the quality of life offered by the
country that one is planning to relocate to. Although Singapore and Hong Kong score equally high on
factors such as ease of company setup, low taxes, stable political regime, and efficient legal system,
there is one factor that gives Singapore an edge over Hong Kong – quality of life. Singapore is the perfect
business relocation jurisdiction for the following reasons: Setting up a Singapore corporation is quick and
easy, Singapore’s low tax system provides tax benefits, companies can gain access to one of the world’s
best workforce, and above all it is easy for foreign entrepreneurs and their foreign company staff to
relocate to Singapore owing to its excellent quality of life.
Singapore is a westernized, cosmopolitan, and environmentally friendly city. It is a melting pot of cultures
where there is respect for all. Singapore boasts of low crime rates and it is one of the safest countries
to live in. The wide use of English facilitates business and is widely appreciated by expats. The efficiency
of government departments and excellent public transport facilities are noteworthy. Furthermore, the
quality of health-care is comparable to Western standards. Singapore is an education hub and educational
institutions are world-class. Most importantly, Singapore’s pollution standards are very low. This eco-
friendly city has turned into an expat haven in recent years. Singapore was also recently rated as
the ‘Best Place to Live in for Asian Expats’ by ECA International.
According to Slagin Parakatil, Senior Researcher at Mercer,
“As the world economy becomes more globalized, cities beyond the traditional financial centres are
emerging as attractive places in which to expand or establish a business. Cities in many emerging
markets, such as in the Middle East or Asia, have seen a significant influx of foreign companies and their
expatriate employees in recent years.”
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