Out of the 9.2 million people residing in the United Arab Emirates, the expatriates contribute to around 7.8 million with the Emirati Nationals holding a population share of 1.4 million.
The UAE is home to more than 200 nationalities making it among the countries with the highest percentage of immigrants. For most expats, there is a need for comprehensive planning and solutions while moving their savings across the borders before they retire, so that they don’t become liable to taxation in their home country.
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Moreover, new research from Old Mutual International, a leading international wealth management business along with Quilter Cheviot found that 64% of expats working in the UAE plan to return back to their home country when they retire.
This highlights the need for expats to choose savings and investment solutions which are suitable and portable back to their home country.
A breakdown of the data shows that 75% of North American expats plan to return back to America when they retire, 62% of European (excluding UK) expats plan to return to Europe when they retire, and 52% of UK expats plan to return to the UK when they retire.
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9% of expats plan to remain in the UAE when they retire contradictory to the belief that all expats leave the UAE once they hit retirement. There are strict rules in place for expats regarding their ability to retire in the region, with some property and business owners perhaps looking to receive residency status. 16% of expats plan to retire somewhere other than their home country or the UAE, with 11% not sure yet where they will retire.
With so many UK expats stating their intention to return to the UK, there is a very clear need for a portable investment solution to enable them to take their savings home in a tax efficient way. There are many investment options open to UK expats to invest in whilst overseas, but in order for the products to be tax efficient and avoid a UK deemed gain tax charge when they return to the UK, they impose limitations on the assets which can be held.
Paul Evans, Head of Region, Middle East & Africa, Old Mutual International, comments: “The research shows just how many expats plan to retire back to their home country.”
“For UK expats, our new Wealth Portfolio is a great example of how we have created an innovative investment solution. It will enable UK expats to save for their future while working in the UAE, without fear of incurring a deemed gain tax charge by HMRC when they return.
Quilter Cheviot, part of Old Mutual Wealth is London headquartered with a representative office in the Dubai International Financial Centre.