TAIPEI, Taiwan - Taiwan ranks 54th for cost of living compared to 119 countries around the world, according to the latest updates of global research organisation Numbeo.
Taiwan has a consumer price index (CPI) of 56.53. Numbeo's index is relative to New York City, which has an index score of 100. As such, Taiwan's cost of living is about 54 per cent lower than New York's.
The CPI consists of groceries, restaurants, transportation and utilities, but does not include accommodation expenses such as rent or mortgage.
As for Taiwan's other major indices, the rent index is pegged at 17.17, groceries index at 65.95, restaurants index at 28.39, consumer price plus rent index at 37.19.
Taiwan's purchasing power is comparatively higher at 71.43. This means that local residents with an average salary can afford to buy about 29 per cent less in typical goods and services than New York City residents with the average salary.
Among other Asia-Pacific countries, South Korea has a CPI of 82.78, Japan 82.14, and Hong Kong 74.83. They rank 18th, 21st and 26th in the world, respectively.
Mainland China and Thailand are on the lower end of the spectrum, and rank 82nd and 87th, respectively. India, Nepal and Pakistan have the lowest cost of living indexes.
European Countries Have the Highest Costs of Living
Europe remains the most costly place to live, as European countries hold four of the top five spots in 2015.
Switzerland tops the chart with a CPI of 126.03, followed by Norway with a score of 118.59. Iceland and Denmark take the fourth and fifth places with CPIs of 102.14 and 100.6, respectively.
Switzerland, Norway and Denmark have been in the top five ranking for three consecutive years.
Venezuela is the only non-European country to squeeze into the top five spots. It ranks third with a CPI of 111.01. The nation's unstable economy has led to growing price levels despite falling average incomes.