NYT: Rich Russians in Dubai, unlike those in Europe, are not troubled by the aversion of the locals

NYT: Rich Russians in Dubai, unlike those in Europe, are not troubled by the aversion of the locals

NYT: Rich Russians in Dubai suffer no differently from those in Europe local aversion

Illustrative photo – In the image from January 2012, a view of Dubai and the tallest building in the world.

Dubai – In times of war, Dubai becomes a safe haven for the wealthiest Russians, and Russian is becoming more and more popular on the local seafront promenades or in luxury shopping centers. In Dubai, Russian businessmen can build a new life without being bothered by the aversion of the locals, wrote The New York Times (NYT).

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One of the Russian immigrants to the city on the Persian Gulf is businessman Dmitry Tyutkov, whose children attend a British school there. In his new refuge, the businessman does not have to worry about being sent to fight in Ukraine, but the advertising agency continues to earn him money in Russia. In addition, he does not see broken roads and homeless people and does not encounter anti-Russian sentiments there, he described his situation to an American newspaper.

“Dubai is much freer, in all respects,” said Tyutkov.

The Russian diaspora in Dubai consists of both billionaires and members of the middle class, often working in technology fields, who fled Russia before partial mobilization. However, both groups have similar reasons for staying in the largest city of the United Arab Emirates – Dubai and Russia continue to be connected by direct flights, the United Arab Emirates remains neutral on the issue of the war in Ukraine and, according to the Russians, is not hostile towards Moscow.

“Why do business somewhere they don't treat you friendly?” asks Tamara Bigajevová, who recently opened a two-story beauty salon in the city and already has regular clients. “They obviously don't want us in Europe,” he adds.

Unlike the streets of some European capitals, Ukrainian flags and rallies in support of Ukraine are not seen in Dubai. Moreover, if any of the locals held anti-Russian views, they would probably keep them to themselves. Demonstrations are de facto illegal in the UAE and freedom of assembly is severely restricted.

“It's a safe island for us for a certain period of time,” says real estate dealer Antalij Kamenskich, whose company, according to him, sold properties in Dubai for hundreds of millions of dollars last year, mainly to Russian clients.

This is how unwritten social agreement that those loyal to the regime in Moscow can continue to accumulate wealth, notes The New York Times. Although Russian President Vladimir Putin in his speeches encourages the Russian elite to develop their lives and investments in Russia, in reality he is giving signals to the rich that you can make the most of their way to further enrichment, believes political scientist Ekaterina Shulmanová.

Citizens of the United Arab Emirates make up only about a tenth of the country's ten million population. The remaining nine million are immigrants, mainly Indians and Pakistanis, a smaller part is also made up of Americans and Europeans. This Middle Eastern country became the most popular destination for private flights from Russia last spring, shortly after Russian troops invaded Ukraine, according to a flight analysis conducted by The New York Times. At the same time, everything indicates that the attractiveness of Dubai has grown even more since then.

The idea that Western sanctions destroyed the Russian economy is an illusion, according to Tyutka. His ad agency benefited as new firms competed for positions vacated by Western companies pulling out of Russia. Businessmen abroad could also take advantage of the fact that the ruble exchange rate reached a seven-year high against the dollar last summer, so they could exchange the money they earned into dollars through banks that were not under sanctions. “We've been making colossal profits in dollars, you see?” concludes the entrepreneur.