Half UAE total wealth owned by just one per cent of residents

Published:  3 Oct at 6 PM
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As the super-rich in the UAE get even wealthier, a report has revealed they control over half the emirates’ total wealth.

It’s well-known that the UAE acts as a magnet for multi-millionaires, with a recent report admitting that just one per cent of the entire population owns 51 per cent of the combined wealth of the emirates. The lucky few, known as High Net Worth Individuals, are the US dollar millionaires with investments, bank deposits, cash, properties and other tangible assets worth at least one million and usually far more.

In December last year, the New World Wealth publication estimated the group numbers around 88,700, with their combined total of assets a massive $470 billion. Including large sums held by a good number of other less wealthy residents, some of whom are expats, the UAE is now the Middle East’s largest wealth market and the 28th richest in the world, beating out other favourite mega-rich hideaways such as South Africa, Portugal, Israel and Turkey.

The ever-widening gap between the mega-wealthy and the rest doesn’t seem to be a cause for concern due to the official line that middle class earners are also seeing their comparatively far smaller fortunes increase from year to year. According to New World Wealth, the UAE acts as a magnet for migrating millionaires, thus increasing the gap between the mega-wealthy and the rest of the population.

The largest contributor as regards generating millions is the financial and professional services sector, providing endless disposable income for the lucky owners of 18 per cent of the fortunes brought into the UAE. Revenues from the oil and gas sector account for another 15 per cent, and the construction industry has made huge money for another 10 per cent. Even more interesting is the fact that the majority of non-UAE- born millionaires are expatriates from South Africa, Nigeria, India and Turkey.
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