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Sat 6 Jul 2019 01:20 PM

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A third of expat Brits in the UAE want a return home

Latest survey reveals half of respondents believe UK has changed for the worst

A third of expat Brits in the UAE want a return home

Just one in three British expats living in the Gulf intend to move back to the UK in the future.

The survey of 1,126 British expats, by Abu Dhabi-based Hoxton Capital Management, revealed over half feel the UK has changed for the worst since leaving – with Brexit, particularly, having a big influence on thinking.

The research also suggests around 41 percent of Brits in the Middle East moved to the region to improve their lifestyle, with 10 percent doing so for an adventure.

A further nine percent moved to join family already living in a Gulf state.

Chris Ball, partner at Hoxton Capital Management, told Arabian Business: “It’s difficult to identify a single reason for individuals not returning to the UK, but our research indicates that most people leave Britain for the Gulf seeking an improved lifestyle. We believe that people find what they’re looking for in terms of lifestyle and simply prefer their new lives abroad.”

According to Ball, there are between 100,000 and 200,000 Brits living in the UAE, which has grown steadily from around 20,000 in 2008.

Around 27 percent of Brits were attracted to the country by the tax free salary. The HSBC Expat Explorer survey, released in January, found that nearly three-quarters of expats working in the UAE earn more than they would in their home country.

According to Deutsche Bank’s Mapping the World’s Prices 2019 survey, expat workers in Dubai have an average of around $2,068 per month left to spend after they have paid their rent.

While the United Arab Emirates still ranked 11th in the world overall, this represents a year-on-year decline of 19 percent from an average of $2,554 in 2018, the survey found.

“The Gulf region presents professionals with an excellent opportunity to earn more than they might in other parts of the world - and that’s no secret. However, if you are considering moving to the Middle East, or if you’ve even been based in the region for a while, then we suggest seeking financial advice before moving and once settled in your new home,” said Ball.