The Strategist

Japan becomes the most expensive country for professional expats

09/03/2021 - 09:25

Japan topped the list of the most expensive countries for employers to hire foreign workers. The United Kingdom dropped from first place to second, followed by India, China and Hong Kong.

Japan has become the most expensive place for companies to work and live for foreign workers. It surpassed the United Kingdom, which previously topped the list of most expensive countries for expat employers, reports CNBC, citing a study by ECA International.

The average expat package in Japan costs employers $405,685. That's more than any other international business center, according to ECA International's MyExpatriate Market Pay survey. The study, which takes into account cash salaries, benefits and taxes, points to an increase in the total cost of foreign mid-level professionals staying in Japan.

The U.K. ($404,405) dropped from first place to second most expensive to send employees overseas in 2020. Other countries that ranked high on the overall cost list were India ($315,696), China ($285,824) and Hong Kong ($245,276). France, the United States, Switzerland, Argentina and Taiwan were among the top 10 most expensive countries for expats.

ECA International Regional Director Lee Kuan said growth in Japan was driven primarily by currency fluctuations, with the Japanese yen remaining stable against the U.S. dollar last year. Unlike many other places in Asia, home values in Tokyo rose moderately in 2020 compared with 2019.