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Monte Carlo still most expensive property market in the world

A shortage of space and its status as a tax haven as well as its glamour and nightlife puts it on top of the annual survey of real estate markets published by Global Property Guide.

Average prices in Monte Carlo are $4,420 per square foot, more than double that of second placed Moscow with $1,937 per square foot and third placed London at $1,928 per square foot.

'Monte Carlo is a city of the rich, small and concentrated,' said Matthew Montagu-Pollock, publisher of the online real estate research firm's report. 'The primary reasons for such high prices are related to a shortage of space and tax havens,' he added.

Moscow's move up one place was propelled by strong economic growth, partly a result of recent high oil prices, and a rise in residential real estate prices in the first three quarters of the year, according to the report.

The effect of the global credit crunch saw New York fall from number two to sixth place but growth in Asian markets pushed Hong Kong into fourth place and Tokyo into fifth place. Paris is in seventh followed by Singapore, Italy and then Mumbai.

But for those who don't want to, or cannot afford to pay such high prices the report also indicates where the world's cheapest real estate can be found.

Right down at the bottom of the list of 112 cities is Cairo in Egypt. The second least expensive is Bangalore in India and then Concepcion in Chile.

South America features highly at the bottom end with Quito in Ecuador, Managua in Nicaragua, Lima in Peru and Santiago in Chile, all in the bottom ten.

Three Asian cities are included in the 10 cheapest, all located in rapidly growing and heavily populated countries, Bangalore in India, Chengdu in China and Jakarta in Indonesia.