Bratislava, Slovakia’s capital, has risen to 30th place in a chart of the most expensive cities in the world, with costs rising above other regional capitals like Berlin or Prague.
Experts say it reflects a successful run of strong economic growth in recent years. Life in Bratislava is now more expensive than in any of the other Visegrad four (V4) capitals, where currencies have weakened and where life has become cheaper, the Sme.sk website wrote on July 7.
This difference was biggest in Warsaw (now in 113th place), but it could be seen in Prague (70th) and Budapest (108th). Bratislava rose 15 places and is now ranked 30th.
The chart compares about 200 items essential for living permanently in each city or town, like housing costs, travel costs, food and clothing. It is interesting to note that the life in Bratislava is more expensive for foreigners living here than for Slovaks.
Sociologist Ján Bunčák thinks that life in the Slovak capital is probably among the most expensive in Europe; to the East, only Moscow is pricier. He ascribes this to the strengthening currency and to the fact that Slovaks do not use very many ‘luxury’ services that are connected with managerial positions (the ones often occupied by foreigners). Economic growth has made life more expensive, especially when it comes to prices of real estate, both purchased and rented. Last year, the Slovak economy grew faster than those of its neighbours.
The survey of 143 cities worldwide, conducted by Mercer, was topped by Tokyo, Osaka and Moscow. Sme.sk
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
8. Jul 2009 at 14:00