5 October 2015

Ultra high net worth population in UAE concentrated in Abu Dhabi, Dubai

There are 1,275 ultra wealthy individuals in the UAE, representing 20% of the total ultra wealthy population in the Middle East, Wealth-X said. The combined wealth of the UAE's ultra high net worth (UHNW*) population stands at US$255 billion.

The study also reveals that 57% of the UAE's UHNW population amassed their fortune through entrepreneurship. Only 8% fully inherited their fortune; and 35% partially inherited and grew their wealth.

Key findings include:
  • Nearly 1,000 UHNW individuals are based in the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi (450 individuals), and in Dubai (495) 
  • Saudi Arabia and the UAE jointly account for over 45% of the UHNW population in the Middle East 
  • Only 3% of the UAE's UHNW population made its wealth through oil, gas and consumable fuels 
  • The most significant source of wealth for the UAE's UNHW population is industrial conglomerates, at more than 20%
  • 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) 

There are nearly 6,000 UHNW individuals in the Middle East with a combined net worth of US$995 billion. Saudi Arabia has the largest UHNW population (1,495 ultra wealthy individuals) and UHNW wealth (US$320 billion) in the region, followed by the UAE.

David Awit, Wealth-X Director for the Middle East, commented: "Despite the UAE equity market suffering declines of nearly 20% in the last year, our study shows that UHNW individuals in the country have defied this economic backdrop to record further increases in their fortunes in 2015, highlighting the ability of the world's wealthiest individuals to continue to create new wealth."

* Wealth-X defines UHNW individuals as those with US$30 million and above in net assets.