Kuala Lumpur is now the 74th most expensive city to live in, rising 12 spots from 86th last June, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). The EIU also revealed to the Malaysian Insider that KL’s cost of living index rose from 67th in June, 2009, which was just after Datuk Seri Najib Razak took over as prime minister, to 83rd this month, a jump of 16 points or 23 per cent.
In other words, we pay 83% of what New Yorkers pay to eat, live and sleep every day. The sad part of this equation is that we don’t earn anywhere near 83% of what our American counterparts do. As voiced by the people when the Budget 2012 was to be tabled, analysts have said that the cost of living will be one of the biggest issues in the next election.
In the run-up to the 2008 polls, a spike in fuel prices and toll rates had contributed to a backlash against the Abdullah administration and helped earn the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition the informal moniker of “Barang Naik” (Malay for “Price Increase”).