KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia has been ranked one of the cheapest places in the world to purchase a Big Mac, according to The Economist.
The British news magazine's annual "Big Mac" Index, which gauges if global currencies are at their correct level, has ranked Malaysia third behind India and South Africa as the cheapest place in the world to purchase the McDonald's signature burger.
"The price paid for a Big Mac in Malaysia is RM7.40 (S$2.82), which is equivalent to US$2.23 when converted using the global exchange rates.
"This amount is lower when compared with the actual price of a Big Mac that is sold in the United States for US$4.62 (S$5.80), indicating a 50 per cent difference.
"In other words, the Big Mac sold in Malaysia is half the price of the same burger sold in the US," the magazine revealed.
India's "Maharaja Mac" only cost US$1.54, which is three times less than it is sold in the US, hence making it the cheapest Big Mac available in the world.
At the other end of the spectrum, Norwegians are being ripped off for a Big Mac as it is sold for US$7.80, 70 per cent more than what the burger costs in the US.
Other countries listed as selling Big Macs at high prices included Venezuela (USD$7.15) and Switzerland (US$7.14).
"Big Mac" Index was invented by The Economist in 1986 as a light-hearted guide to measure the value of currencies worldwide. It is based on the theory of purchasing power parity, the notion that in the long run exchange rates should move towards a value that would equalise the prices of an identical basket of goods and services (in this case, a burger) in any two countries. McDonald's Big Mac was selected as a measuring tool as it is sold in about 120 countries.