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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Saudi Arabia top Middle East richest list

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia and the UAE jointly account for over 45 percent of the UHNW (ultra high net worth) population in the Middle East, a new Wealth-X study has found.

 The wealth-intelligence organization defines UHNW individuals as those with $30 million and above in net assets.

 Saudi Arabia has the largest UHNW population (1,495 ultra wealthy individuals) and UHNW wealth ($320 billion) in the region, followed by the UAE, said the report.

 In the UAE, there are 1,275 such individuals, worth a combined $255 billion, representing 20 percent of the total ultra wealthy population in the Middle East.

 The UAE is ranked 22nd in Wealth-X’s global ranking of UHNW population by country, behind Saudi Arabia (17) but ahead of Kuwait (32). Nearly 1,000 ultra high net worth (UHNW) individuals
are based in UAE capital Abu Dhabi (450 individuals) and Dubai (495).

 The report said that Saudi Arabia’s more dispersed economic growth has resulted in a split of its UHNW population across a few of its key hubs.

 All of these main hubs have experienced faster growth in UHNW population than their respective country’s average.

 This concentration exemplifies how vital infrastructure is facilitating the growth of both fortunes and opportunities.

 “As such, clusters continue to dominate, and we expect these cities’ existing pull of international resources to become stronger,” said the report.

 Saudi Arabia and the UAE jointly account for over 45 percent of the region’s UHNW population, and both of these countries experienced fast growth in UHNW population and wealth.

 The only country in the region to experience an overall decline in its UHNW population and wealth this year was Kuwait, due to the slow GDP growth and a declining equity market in the country.

 In Saudi Arabia or UAE, the UHNW populations control more than half their respective countries’ total wealth.

 The study also reveals that 57 percent of the UAE’s UHNW population amassed their fortune through entrepreneurship.

Only 8 percent fully inherited their fortune; and 35 percent partially inherited and grew their wealth.

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