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    Saturday, May 14, 2022

    Dubai emerges as a popular second-home destination for expats

    Dubai has cemented its position as one of the top cities for expats due to its high-quality lifestyle and safe environment.

    Referring to the latest survey conducted by InterNations in which more than 12,000 members participated, Zoom Property Insights said Dubai has emerged as a popular destination for the second-home of expats because of its excellent infrastructure, successful strategy to handle the pandemic, and introduction of visa and labour reforms.

    The emirate’s stable economy, which is set to expand to 4.5 per cent in 2022, is one of the major reasons that has made many expats select Dubai as their second home.

    n addition, the emirate’s position as a business hub in the Middle East attracts many international organisations to set up their base here to expand their presence in the region. This creates abundant job opportunities for expats as only one in 23 workers in Dubai is an Emirati national, according to Breakingviews’ calculations.

    Visa reforms, a game changer

    Zoom Property Insights said low tax-base, safety, diversity, and remarkable infrastructure are some of the reasons accredited to the popularity of Dubai among expatriates. However, latest labour and visa reforms are proved game-changer as expats now have many options for long-term renewable visas under flexible work environment in the emirate.

    Shedding light on how visa reforms are changing things in Dubai, Ata Shobeiry, CEO at Zoom Property, said Dubai has always been a favourite of people seeking a home away from their homeland. However, some people were reluctant because of no permanent residency in the Emirate.

    “Things are changing at a rapid pace ever since the visa reforms have been announced last year. The availability of Golden and Silver visas has changed the mind of many people who are now considering buying property in Dubai and choosing it as their second home,” he said.

    Shobeiry also cited 100 per cent business ownership as another reason for increased interest from foreigners to buy property or start business in the emirate.

    “The fact that expatriates can now enjoy full ownership of their companies in Dubai has also attracted more entrepreneurs with innovative business ideas. This has resulted in the creation of more employment opportunities, which is attracting more foreigners seeking employment opportunities in the emirate,” he said.

    Affordable housing units

    Zoom Property Insights said major part of Dubai’s residential market falls under the affordable segment despite an increase in property prices as expats will have to pay much higher rates in New York, London and Hong Kong to own a property. This, coupled with a lower cost of living in Dubai and low taxation base, allow expatriates to increase their savings while they lead a premium lifestyle.

    Furthermore, the process to buy property in Dubai is quite straightforward for both locals and expatriates. The market currently favours buyers as they can benefit from reduced mortgage rates, affordable property prices, and convenient payment plans, according to Zoom Property Insights.

    Upscale lifestyle

    Dubai’s cosmopolitan vibe and upscale lifestyle attract many people looking for a second home beyond the geographical boundaries of their homeland in a bid to improve their living standards. The presence of various tourist hotspots such as the world’s tallest building Burj Khalifa and only seven-star hotel Burj Al Arab also attract millionaires and celebrities to buy property in the emirate, according to Zoom Property Insights.

    With a myriad of recently launched and soon-to-be operational new attractions and development projects, such as Dubai Museum of the Future, Dubai CommerCity, Royal Atlantis Resort, Ain Dubai, Ciel Dubai, and Meydan One Mall, Dubai aims to attract more foreign nationals. The emirate is also geared up to promoting an active lifestyle as His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, recently tested the new cycle path at Jumeirah Beach.

    Apart from being a second home to many, Dubai also maintains its reputation as a most preferred tourist destination as it managed to welcome 7.28 million visitors last year despite the global pandemic, according to the latest official data.

    “Dubai remains an attractive and popular destination for expatriates and ultimately it will benefit the emirate’s property sector,” Shobeiry said.

    • Excellent infrastructure, successful strategy to handle the pandemic, and introduction of visa and labour reforms attracted more foreigners to Dubai.

    • The emirate’s stable economy is one of the major reasons that has made many expats select Dubai as their second home.

    • Low tax-base, safety, diversity, and remarkable infrastructure are some of the reasons accredited to the popularity of Dubai among expatriates.

    • Latest labour and visa reforms are proved game-changer to attract more foreigners.

    • 100 per cent business ownership as another reason for increased interest from foreigners.

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