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Quality of living: Vienna first, London falls beyond belief

Staff Writer |
Vienna came out on top once again in an annual survey ranking the highest quality of living among hundreds of major cities, while London slumped to 40th place and other cities in the UK struggled to make an impact.

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Consultancy firm Mercer's annual research into quality of life levels for expatriates takes into consideration several factors, including infrastructure, crime levels and political stability.

The Austrian capital topped the list for the eighth consecutive time, with European cities making up the vast majority of the top 10 chosen by the firm. Auckland and Vancouver were the only non-European cities to infiltrate the first 10 spots.

While London performed admirably in separate research focused solely on infrastructure, in which it finished in sixth place, in the general ranking it was below the likes of Dublin, Singapore and Honolulu.

Edinburgh finished in 45th place, followed by Birmingham and Glasgow in 53rd, Aberdeen in 58th and Belfast in 66th.

The research was conducted by Mercer in order to provide businesses with an accurate analysis of which cities provide desirable surroundings for the relocation of employees.

"A city's infrastructure, or rather the lack thereof, can considerably affect the quality of living that expatriates and their families experience on a daily basis," said Slagin Parakatil, Principal at Mercer and responsible for its quality of living research.

"Access to a variety of transport options, being connected locally and internationally, and access to electricity and drinkable water are among the essential needs of expatriates arriving in a new location on assignment."

Looking towards the other end of the list, Baghdad once again picked up the least-coveted title of the lowest ranked city in the world, joined by the likes of Damascus, Syria and Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

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