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Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

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Old Feb 9th 2017, 9:49 am
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Default Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Full article:

https://www.ft.com/content/2d7401f8-...f-061b01e23655

Summary:
Austerity driven by low oil price prompts high-earning foreigners to quit the emirate

There are few bigger attractions for expatriates seeking a top-paying job in the oil-rich Gulf than the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds.

“The purse strings are tightening,” says a senior investment banker in the emirate.

Abu Dhabi, the UAE’s top oil producer and the wealthiest of its seven emirates, has long epitomised the petrodollar wealth of the Gulf — Adia manages assets estimated at $800bn. But government austerity measures now illustrate how the region’s leaders are being forced to take radical action in response to prolonged low oil prices and implement politically sensitive policies that were once considered a taboo in societies where government largesse has been the norm.

Living costs have soared as civil servants’ packages have been trimmed and electricity tariffs driven up in reforms to government subsidy programmes. At the same time, delays to multibillion-dollar projects and spending cuts have triggered widespread redundancies, not least in the oil and gas sector. Adnoc, the state oil company, has shed 5,000 jobs in the past 18 months,

More job losses are expected as the government looks to rationalise its diverse range of affiliated companies. Bankers estimate there could be more than 2,000 job losses caused by the merger of National Bank of Abu Dhabi and First Gulf Bank, including a cull of expensive senior management and cuts across the national branch network.
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Old Feb 9th 2017, 10:01 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

That's a pretty long-winded way of showing off that you subscribe to the FT
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Old Feb 9th 2017, 10:02 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Originally Posted by weasel decentral View Post
That's a pretty long-winded way of showing off that you subscribe to the FT
Some of us have to maintain the intellectual standards around here.
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Old Feb 9th 2017, 11:36 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

I do enjoy the FT. Their shell shocked post-Brexit commentaries are worth the money

Still, their actual reporting is reputable enough. If the FT is saying this, then the economy in the UAE is probably much worse than many realise or are trying to pretend otherwise. That AD is slowly turning into a ghost town has been the handwriting on the wall for a long time now. Hotel bookings, dueling happy hours and so forth have been documented on here.

But....but....what about Dubai? That's the one city we only really care about.

Originally Posted by Millhouse View Post
Some of us have to maintain the intellectual standards around here.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 4:59 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
Still, their actual reporting is reputable enough.
Good to see the FT getting approval from Piers Morgan.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 7:22 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

What did he say?

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
Good to see the FT getting approval from Piers Morgan.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 11:19 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

If anyone wants to read it just Google for "abu dhabi expats take flight"

It will bring a link and let you read the full article on the FT without logging in. Works only for the one article I think.

The comments on the article are interesting to read
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 11:45 am
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Originally Posted by dominoman View Post
If anyone wants to read it just Google for "abu dhabi expats take flight"

It will bring a link and let you read the full article on the FT without logging in. Works only for the one article I think.

The comments on the article are interesting to read
Not heard this one before... did like the comment a lot:

Emirates : "English Managed Indian Run Arab Taking Enormous Salary"
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 12:30 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Speaking of comments, this one really did take the cake (see below). Both interesting and eye-rolling at the same time. Heavily exaggerated and a bit of fake news. Nonetheless, his first paragraph does underscore the reality of the region. 90% of the population earning less than USD 1,500 means the economy is heavily dependent on a very small pool of people.

See below.

With almost 90% expats earning less than USD 1,500 a month and the remainder 10% or less including Emiratis under emotional, work and financial stress, the exodus is massive. This article barely gives a glimpse.

Job cuts have been more than 1m across UAE, half the major banks have left including RBS, Coutts. Soc Gen, Barclays, Lloyds, Merrill etc. Over 360 firms have shut in DIFC alone in the last 10 years while 300 have shut in the last 5 years.

ADNOC, ENOC, Shell, Etihad, Etihad Rail etc have fired over 25k employees, mostly well paid in that 10% population. Taxes (they call them fines and fees here) are being enforced and new ones launched on a daily basis, latest being fine for spitting of USD 280 and USD 280 for drying clothes in the balcony in Abu Dhabi being enforced for the first time ever in AD.

No one cares about the 90% people who have been deported in excess of 1.5m in the last 2 years.

Thousands of businessmen have run away that cannot be mentioned and jails are packed with new jails under construction.

Over a dozen hotels have shut and 2 restaurants close on an average weekly across UAE, mostly Dubai.�

USD 20k water bills are accurate when houses are sold for USD 3-15m. Palm Jumeirah, Barari, Emirates Hills (all Dubai) are places where bills shoot more than USD 20k a month and thousands live there. Emiratis use water and electricity as if free and their bulbs at their lavish homes are something to be seen.

Free healthcare of Emiratis was shut last year after several decades and they need to pay 20% which is affecting all hospitals and travel since they have yanked the elderly and the sick from around the world and do not visit top hospitals any more causing slowdown in the healthcare industry with hundreds of layoffs. Doctors are giving 75% discounts these days.

Since banks, hospitals, airlines, airports, major hotels and towers and malls etc all belong to the Govt hence the impact on cash flows is sudden and quite damaging being owned by one. It has become hard for salaries to be paid to hospital and police forces. Hence, the hikes in everything from property taxes, toll roads, water/electricity, enforcement of fines etc, 5% VAT starts in 10 months. Corporate taxes should be announced this year.

Banks have fired over 20,000 and all replacements are by Emiratis and service levels have dropped massively. Almost all hotel restaurants are at 50% discount despite Valentine's and peak season until the heat begins.

Article is quite apt though I had forecasted all this back in July 2015. Iran animosity, strong dollar and weak currencies of Africa, Russia, Europe, 4 civil wars plus ISIS and oil price decline of over 50% for 33 months is a whammy that even the best cannot handle.

Companies owned by Rulers have unpaid pension and salaries for over 200 UK citizens under AEI and Ducab. 2 Dubai sovereign fund vehicles were shut last year due to lack of liquidity. Abu Dhabi was forced to merge 2 sovereign funds and 2 banks including the Top 50 strongest bank in the world.

The collapse coming after March 2017 will be epic because liquidity is ZERO in the GCC and no one is being paid. Supermarkets are shutting as are basic restaurants. Malls are empty and prices are 50% to 200% higher than in the UK. BMW 3 series is selling for half the price of 2 years ago.�

Dubai's trade and tourism has struggled since Jan 2015 and numbers are showing. EK and Etihad have stopped various destinations like Sao Paulo, Turkey, some Europe, Iran, Yemen etc and reduced many flights. Weekly flights have dropped from a peak of 7,000 weekly flights to 6,500 at Dubai airport. Etihad and EK have fired 5,000 each in the last 2-3 months.

Many shops are closed at Dubai mall, Saks, House of Fraser and BHS have all shut in Dubai as did Rivington Grill and The Ivy and many more.

It's worse than tough and with Yemen sending a Scud missile to Riyadh this week and Mecca a few months ago, fireworks are yet to come!
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 12:38 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

That's it I'm off.

... to play golf.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 12:41 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Surely you, as a headhunter, must have a decent idea what's going on in terms of recruitment and staff replacement?

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
That's it I'm off.

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Old Feb 12th 2017, 1:15 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Job cuts have been more than 1m across UAE, half the major banks have left including RBS, Coutts. Soc Gen, Barclays, Lloyds, Merrill etc. Over 360 firms have shut in DIFC alone in the last 10 years while 300 have shut in the last 5 years.
obviously ignoring all those that opened to replace them.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 1:36 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Yeah. Anyone with half a brain can read through the lines in the doom and gloom of the comment.

Personally, I think Dubai is ok(ish) but Doha is struggling and AD is very tight.

Originally Posted by Millhouse View Post
obviously ignoring all those that opened to replace them.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 2:10 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
Speaking of comments, this one really did take the cake (see below). Both interesting and eye-rolling at the same time. Heavily exaggerated and a bit of fake news. Nonetheless, his first paragraph does underscore the reality of the region. 90% of the population earning less than USD 1,500 means the economy is heavily dependent on a very small pool of people.

See below.
I'm not sure why the author had to plug in a few obviously wrong things as it spoils the entire bit which has a lot of actual facts ...

Maybe this is the reality of the new "alternative fact" era.
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Old Feb 12th 2017, 5:05 pm
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Default Re: Expats take flight as Abu Dhabi tightens purse strings

I saw a 5 night stay at qaryat al beri Shangrila hotel in AD advertised In Hays Travels for £399 inc flights and breakfast plus evening meal. Never seen it so cheap to book from the UK.seems like they selling cheap to get the tourist $£€.
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