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SINGAPORE has fallen one spot to take third place in Asia's most expensive cities for luxury living, following an easing in property prices in the city state. Hong Kong takes top spot, followed by Shanghai, while Kuala Lumpur is the most competitive.
In a report on Asia's most expensive cities for luxury living, Swiss private bank Julius Baer showed the cost of luxury living rose by 1.42 per cent on an aggregate basis in US dollar terms, compared to a 1.68 per cent contraction in 2016, indicating sustained demand for luxury goods and services in Asia.
Prices for cars and lawyers in Singapore are the highest in Asia, while the country is the second-most expensive for fine dining, defined as the price of a degustation menu at a top-rated restaurant. Fine dining was added for the first time to reflect the growing trend of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) spending on experiences. The country is also one of the most expensive in Asia to have a Lasik operation.
Chief executive officer of Julius Baer Group, Boris Collardi, said that wealthy Asian consumers and their increasing spending "play an ever more important role in driving global consumer demand".
Some 13 out of the 22 items measured in 11 Asian cities saw price increases.
The report found the biggest price increases in cigars, men's suits and legal fees, while hotel suites, ladies' handbags and botox saw the largest declines.
In other areas, Singapore was one of the cheapest in Asia to buy jewellery and pianos.