UAE tops region in global residence ranking index
23 May 2016
The UAE has improved its ranking as the most preferred residence destination in the Middle East region for investors seeking to participate in "residence-by-investment" programme, reports Khaleej Times.
The Global Residence and Citizenship Programmes 2016 report shows that the UAE leads the region in residence attractiveness, ranking 13 out of 19 countries in this year's index, showing an increase of two positions from last year, up from number 15 in the 2015 report.
The UAE continues to be a leading and preferred destination for residence and ranks very highly in the annual indexes. This year, the UAE has moved up two spots from last year's ranking. It scores well on some of the residence benchmark indicators including reputation, quality of life, tax, processing time and quality of processing.
The UAE is also ranked first among Arab countries for the ease of doing business.
The World Bank report, which measures the performance of 189 states in facilitating doing business for investors, said the UAE has advanced one step in the ranking to occupy 31st rank globally. Among cities Dubai has emerged as the most attractive destination in the GCC for the region's wealthy property investors, according to a survey by real estate consultancy Cluttons.
The study, which polled high net worth individuals across the region, found that 27 per cent of respondents identified Dubai among their top three destinations. It was followed by Abu Dhabi (21 per cent) and Sharjah (eight per cent). Doha and Kuwait City rounded off the top five.
Out of the 19 residence programmes reviewed by the Global Residence and Citizenship Programmes report for 2016, Portugal's Golden Residence Permit Programme has again emerged as the world's best residence-by-investment programme, with a score of 80 out of 100.
For the second year in a row, Malta's Individual Investor Programme (MIIP) is the top ranking citizenship-by-investment programme in the world, with a score of 73 out of 100. The Mediterranean island nation is followed by Cyprus (71), and Antigua and Barbuda (62) in 2nd and 3rd place respectively.
Residence and citizenship planning has established itself as an important industry over the last few years, providing a rapidly growing number of wealthy individuals the privileges of visa-free travel as well as better security, quality of life and education in exchange for a significant and meaningful economic contribution.
China, Russia and CIS countries have the highest demand for citizenship-by-investment programmes, closely followed by the MENA region.