Why global millionaires prefer moving to UAE


Australia and the UAE have emerged as the most sought-after migration destinations for the world’s super-rich as global wealth migration continued to accelerate in 2016.

As around 82,000 ultra rich people shifted overseas in 2016, compared to 64,000 in 2015, an estimated 11,000 millionaires moved to Australia while the UAE drew 5,000 millionaires, up from 3,000 in 2015.

“The UAE has everything, be it safety, sophistication, fast global connectivity, leisure and super luxury facilities including iconic residential and recreational spots along with investor-friendly regulations to allure the world’s super rich in droves,” said a senior investment consultant.

Millionaires or high net worth individuals (HNWIs) refers to individuals with net assets of $1 million or more.

According to New World Wealth’s latest report on global wealth and wealth migration trends in 2016, for the second straight year Australia remained the top country worldwide for millionaire inflows, beating out traditional destinations such as the US and the UK.

An estimated 11,000 millionaires moved to Australia in 2016 compared to 10,000 that moved to the US and 3,000 that moved to the UK.

The UAE attracted 2,000 more ultra-rich compared to 3,000 in 2015 and outpaced other GCC countries in the millionaire migration. Qatar drew 2,000 millionaires in 2016.

The reasons behind HNWIs preferring Australia to USA and the UK is that Australia has one of the best healthcare systems in the world and its location makes it a good base for doing business in emerging Asian countries such as China, Hong Kong, Korea, Singapore, Vietnam and India.

Moreover, Australia is relatively immune to the turmoil in the Middle East and the related refugee crisis in Europe and it has lower inheritance taxes than the US and much lower inheritance taxes than the UK.

Other countries that experienced large inflows of HNWIs in 2016 include Canada and New Zealand.

On the other hand, countries that lost large numbers of HNWIs in 2016 included France, Turkey and Brazil. In 2016, there has been major outflow of millionaires from Turkey to the UAE.

Large outflow of millionaires from France (over 12,000 millionaires is 2016) is notable. France is being heavily impacted by rising religious tensions between Christians and Muslims, especially in urban areas, the report said.

“We expect that millionaire migration away from France will accelerate over the next decade as these tensions escalate,” it added.

The report further noted that other European countries where religious tensions are starting to emerge such as Belgium, Germany, Austria, the UK, Holland and Sweden will also be negatively affected in the near future.

“Going forward, we expect HNWI migration into the UK to continue, despite the Brexit. In particular we expect large HNWI inflows from France, China, India, the Middle East and Africa into the UK. However, on the flip side, we do expect some UK HNWIs to move to Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the US over the next 10 years,” the report said.

While Mumbai is India’s richest city with total wealth around $820 billion, 46,000 millionaires and 28 billionaires, two Kolkata localities – Ballygunge and Alipore — have emerged as among the most affluent in India. Surat is now the fastest growing city in India in terms of GDP growth, followed by Ahmedabad.

India recorded the second highest growth in overall wealth between the years 2015-16 – almost 12 per cent.

While Kolkata is home to 9600 millionaires, Hyderabad boasts of 9000 such high net worth individuals, Bangalore 7700, Pune 4500, Gurgaon 4000 and Chennai 6600 millionaires.




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