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A bad bargain
Moscow is one of the world’s most expensive cities for expats. Yet in a new quality-of-life ranking of world cities, compiled by Mercer Human Resources Consulting, Moscow did not fare well.

Zurich and Geneva took first and second places, respectively, while Moscow languished at 171st overall, out of 215 cities. It earned a miserable 201st place for health and sanitation, based on its poor medical services, high levels of pollution and disease, the questionable potability of the water and its inefficient waste-removal and water-sanitation systems. Since Muscovites shun tap water in favour of mineral water, and almost all roof gutters seem to empty directly out onto the city’s pavements, which flood during rainstorms, this ranking is not terribly surprising. Almost half of the top 30 cities are western European. Baghdad was rated as the worst place to live overall.

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