President & Group Managing Director: Dr.Shelly Ahmed | Editor in Chief & Group CEO: M H Ahssan

Friday, June 24, 2016

A Glimpse Of 'Middle Eastern Millionaires' Lifestyle

By FAZIL PERVEZ | INNLIVE

The United Arab Emirates is home to the largest number of high-net-worth-individuals (HNWI) in the Arab world, a newly released report finds.

Produced by New World Wealth, the ranking comes as part of the recently published Middle East 2016 Wealth Report, exploring the regional countries millionaires resided in during 2015.

In the Middle East, data shows that theUAE was home to 72,000 HNWIs in 2015, followed by Turkey (70,000 HNWIs), Saudi Arabia (54,000 HNWIs), Iran (32,000 HNWIs), Qatar (28,000 HNWIs), Lebanon (14,000 HNWIs) and Jordan (6,300 HNWIs).

According to New World Wealth Advisory, which produced the report, millionaires or high-net-worth-individuals (HNWIs) are those with net assets worth at least USD1 million.

Turkey’s decline:
Turkey had topped the list at the end of 2014, when it was home to 98,000 HNWIs, but challenges the country faced during 2015 led to a 24 per cent drop in the number.

Many elements contributed to the decline, including a 20 per cent depreciation of the Turkish lira against the US dollar, a drop in the performance of the Turkish stock market and the large numbers of Turkish HNWIs who relocated to the United Kingdom, UAE, Malta, Cyprus and Qatar during the year.

Between the period of 2007 and 2015, Turkey witnessed a growth of only 15 per cent, ranking the lowest in the region.

A race of years:
Qatar has been the strongest performing, adding more HNWIs between 2007 and 2015 than any other country in the region. HNWIs growth in the country measured at approximately 80 per cent and it was ranked as the top-performing Middle East country during the period, which covers the financial crisis.

According to the report, the growth of the number of HNWIs in Qatar during the period was driven by a “strong growth in local financial services, media, telecoms, construction and real estate,” driving a number of HNWIs to move to the country.

Qatar was followed by Jordan, which – thanks to a boost in local technology, construction and real estate – saw the number of its HNWIs grow by 70 per cent during the period between 2007 and 2015, according to the data.

The UAE ranked third after Qatar and Jordan, achieving a HNWIs growth of 60 per cent. This was supported by the migration of 10,000 HNWIs into the country.

Future forecast:
Going forward, Jordan is expected to outperform its regional peers by achieving a 75 per cent growth by 2025. Jordan would be followed by Iran, which is expected to grow by 70 per cent, mainly following the lifting of US sanctions and expected business opportunities.

Many millionaires are predicted to leave several countries in the region by 2025. A large number are especially expected to leave Turkey if the country slides deeper into political turmoil.
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