Why Singapore is top of most expat quality of life surveys

In both the HSBC Expat Explorer Survey and the Natwest Quality of Life Index, Singapore was top of the pile for expat destinations in 2015. Beating established hotspots like Switzerland and the USA, Singapore provides the best balance – for economics, family life, and experience – according to these in-depth surveys. So why are so many expats moving to Singapore?
While Singapore is at the top of both these lists, many other Asian countries are climbing the expat rankings as well. In recent years economies in this continent have enjoyed rapid economic expansion. This has meant a better standard of living, more jobs, and more expats.
As Cadogan Tate recently reported, the profile of the typical expat has also changed in recent years and this too is likely to have been a factor in Singapore’s surge in popularity. A growing number of expats nowadays see life abroad as a temporary move (54% globally), opting to advance their careers on the international stage by taking on temporary assignments before moving home. The rapid economic growth in Singapore’s economy has seen a corresponding rise in demand for British professional skills which the new generation of expats are happy to supply. Perhaps this is the reason why just 9% of British expats see life in Singapore as a permanent measure, according to the Natwest Quality of Life Index, despite 84% reporting an overall increase in quality of life.
For those who are tempted by international assignments, Singapore has much to offer. The Natwest survey reports that 29% of expats in Singapore work in finance but there is also strong demand for workers in the construction and manufacturing sectors too. More than half (68%) of these British expat workers earn over £125,000 per year, in comparison to a global average of 21%.
Singapore also ranks top in the HSBC Expat Explorer Survey for economics but there’s plenty more to this country’s appeal than just financial wellbeing. The healthcare system is consistently ranked among the best in the world and the education system is well renowned for its discipline and results, providing peace of mind for those moving to Singapore with children. With expats constituting 38% of Singapore’s population, there is plenty of choice when it comes to international schools that teach the American, British, or Australian curriculum.
Singapore is a destination tailor-made for expats. A melting pot of cultures, languages and organisations from all over the world, the Government is keen to appeal to expats and as such offers tax exemptions and flexible immigration policies to draw them in. With such a high proportion of expats, the atmosphere is welcoming to those new in town and recent economic expansion has created a great many jobs for the globally mobile. With such an impressive all-round offering, it’s no wonder Singapore is the number one destination for expats.
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Information correct at time of publication.