Programs written in high level languages MAY be less (time) efficient than programs written in assembler due to the overheads of abstraction mechanisms. It is important to note, however, that PROGRAMMING LANGUAGES DO NOT EXECUTE PROGRAMS, so to talk of this as a language feature is not strictly meaningful, let alone correct.

Efficiency is relative to a given semantics.

The speed of programs depends on the compilation and excution systems ('the system'), and on the style and of skill of programming. For example, it is possible to write Lisp programs for numerical computation that outperform FORTRAN programs, except where the FORTRAN programs are seriously optimised.

OTOH, it is possible (even easy) to write horribly inefficient assembler (for all values of efficient) unless you know what you are doing. Today's optimising compilers are typically better than most humans. After years of research...Compilers have the advantage that a lot of knowledge about efficiency is put in one place, available to you, sir, for only a few hundred dollars!! (USD only, send only cheques or international money orders)

High level languages seriously win-out in terms of cost-efficiency of development, as development is typically (ceteris paribus) quicker, cheaper, and the final product costs less to maintain.