Friday 19 October 2018

UAE tops Mena in residence programme: study

DUBAI, November 20, 2017

The UAE has been ranked as Mena’s top residence-by-investment programme for the third consecutive year, said Henley & Partners, a leading global residence and citizenship advisory firm, in its annual Global Residence and Citizenship Programmes (GRCP) 2017–2018 report.

The report provides a systematic analysis and comprehensive benchmarking of the world’s leading investment migration programmes.

According to the report, the UAE continues to lead the region in residence attractiveness. It ranked 11 out of 20 in this year’s GRCP with a score of 59 out of 100. This represents an increase of two positions from last year and four positions from 2015, up from positions 13 and 15 respectively. The UAE offers a high quality of life and a high level of security for its residents. It is an excellent place to do business and provides easy access to the Middle East region. Additionally, citizens and residents of the UAE are not subject to personal income tax, capital gains taxes, or net worth taxes; however, VAT will apply from 2018 onwards.

Marco Gantenbein, managing partner of Henley & Partners in the Middle East, said: “The UAE continues to be an attractive residence destination and consistently ranks highly in our annual indexes. For the third consecutive year, the UAE has increased in ranking, which can be attributed to its high scores across some of the key residence benchmark indicators.

“Since the launch of the Global Residence and Citizenship Programmes report in 2015, the UAE has moved up in ranking significantly, by nearly 20 per cent. It will be interesting to see if the upcoming implementation of VAT will impact the UAE’s residence programme and how it will perform in next year’s index.”

Out of the 20 residence programmes reviewed, Portugal’s Golden Residence Permit Programme has again emerged as the world’s best residence-by-investment programme, with a score of 79 out of 100. It is followed by Austria (78) and Belgium (77) in 2nd and 3rd place respectively.

Similar to the UAE, the tax burden on residents of Portugal is one of the lowest of the residence programmes ranked in the report, both on corporate and personal levels. A Portuguese residence permit offers visa-free access to Europe’s Schengen area. This year’s edition of the GRCP also saw the addition of Thailand’s exclusive residence programme, which ranked 5thout of the 20 programmes.

The GRCP ranks the 20 most relevant residence-by-investment programmes as well as the top eight citizenship-by-investment programmes available today in two indexes; the Global Residence Programmes Index and the Global Citizenship Programmes Index.

These programmes are evaluated by a distinguished panel of independent experts — including immigration and citizenship lawyers, economists, country risk experts, academic researchers, and other specialists — who take into account a broad range of factors pertaining to each programme.

“Interest in the industry has steadily increased over the past decade and we anticipate that it will continue to do so,” added Gantenbein. “As political instability around the world furthers, we see an increase in demand for alternative residence. Key factors such as the need for global mobility, security and better quality of life are also significantly contributing to the growing interest in alternative residence and citizenship programmes.”

The third edition of the GRCP was launched at Henley & Partners’ 11th Global Residence and Citizenship Conference in Hong Kong. The annual event has become the world’s most significant conference on investment migration, bringing together presidents, prime ministers, senior government officials, leading academics, and industry professionals, as well as top-tier financial and business media. In 2018, the event is set to return to the UAE and will be hosted in Dubai for the second time.

“Following the unprecedented success of the Global Residence and Citizenship Conference year after year, we again expect the conference in Dubai next year to be larger and more impactful than the one in Hong Kong,” concluded Gantenbein. – TradeArabia News Service

Tags: UAE | citizenship | Henley |

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