United Arab Emirates: these Russians settling in Dubai

Published on :

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates have maintained a certain degree of neutrality. This federation of seven emirates, for example, has not joined the American, British and European sanctions against Russia. The trading center of the Persian Gulf monarchy, namely Dubai, has therefore become a popular destination for wealthy Russians.

To escape instability and sanctions imposed on Moscow by the West, some Russians choose to settle in Dubai. In times of crisis, the economic metropolis of the United Arab Emirates has become a kind of haven for business people.

Virtuzone CEO George Hojeige is one of the witnesses to this influx. “We are a company that helps other companies to establish themselves in Dubai and we are seeing a significant increase in the number of Russian entrepreneurs who want to start their business here. Compared to the pre-crisis level, I would say that there is a five to ten times larger increase than before “, he explains.

In the meantime, between 50 and 100 new inquiries from Russian entrepreneurs about his start-up company are received every week. By relocating their business, they can obtain a residency visa and thus protect their financial assets.

We mostly see people like you and me. Just business people or entrepreneurs. We tend to think that all Russians are oligarchs. It’s not the case at all. These are ordinary people, I assure you, who sometimes have some savings and are looking for a fresh start or are hosting their families.

Real estate investments to obtain a visa

Russian businessmen are not the only ones migrating. Dubai also welcomes bankers, journalists or even artists who have been based in Russia.

One of the other ways to get a visa is to invest in real estate. Purchasing a property worth 750,000 dirhams or a little less than 200,000 euros makes it possible to obtain a residency visa in Dubai, valid for 3 years and renewable. So-called visasgolden“, i.e. longer, can also be granted if the amount of the investment is higher.

Thiago Caldas, CEO of the agency Modern Living Estate, also sees increasing demand in his industry. He even hired three Russian-speaking real estate agents for this. “Russians have lived here for a long time. You know the Emirates. They have also come here before as tourists or as investors“, he warns. “However, I find that now when they buy property here they only do so for the return on investment. Mostly they are looking for a stable place to stay. »

To pay for these properties, cryptocurrencies have become one of the main channels, the real estate agent claims. The disconnection of several Russian banks from the SWIFT messaging system and the suspension of Visa and Mastercard business in Russia have sometimes made such transactions difficult.

Leave a Comment