Russia could lose 15% of its millionaires by 2023 because of harsh economic sanctions imposed by the United States and other nations in the wake of its invasion of Ukraine.
The wealth tracking organization Henley & Partners is predicting that Russia will "hemorrhage" some 15,000 millionaires by the end of 2023 as it grapples with harsh economic sanctions, according to the firm.
"Russia is expected to see a net loss of around 15,000 high-net-worth individuals in 2022, a massive 15% of its total millionaire population," New World Health Head of Research Andrew Amoils wrote of the migration trends expected this year. "Affluent individuals have been emigrating from Russia in steadily rising numbers every year over the past decade, an early warning sign of the current problems the country is facing. Historically, major country collapses have usually been preceded by an acceleration in emigration of wealthy people, who are often the first to leave as they have the means to do so."
The organization predicts that the main destination for these millionaires is likely the United Arab Emirates.
The Guardian reported in March, about a month following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, that nations around the world were imposing tough economic sanctions on President Vladimir Putin's country, that the UAE's destination city of Dubai was throwing out the welcome mat for rich Russians, including many of the most well-heeled in Putin's inner circle.
"It's been unbelievable," Alan Pinto, a leasing consultant at Espace Real Estate in Dubai Marina told the Guardian in March. "A radical amount of Russian investors are purchasing units. Even tenants: we've had a huge amount of calls. They transfer their funds via crypto. They have an intermediary who will do that for them and then the cash is passed to the landlords."
The moves come as U.S.-led sanctions against Russia's central bank are preventing it from propping up the Russian ruble, denying them access to the SWIFT messaging system, which hampers Russia's ability to move money around the world, and assets of several key oligarchs are being seized including bank accounts, real estate, and luxury items housed in other countries, according to the Council on Foreign Relations.
In addition, the United States and several other countries have stopped importing Russian oil and gas, a significant money maker for that nation, which combined have the potential to "produce far more severe consequences" to the Russian economy, according to the council.
According to the wealth tracking firm's analysis, Russia has about 101,000 millionaires, or high-net-worth individuals, in the country.
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