The United Arab Emirates is one of richest countries in the world.
Like any other advanced country, the UAE has its fair share of problems. These problems range from the usual cost of living, price of goods, stock market etc
However,one of their truly strange issues, especially in Dubai is the problem of cars being constantly abandoned. This weird trend is particularly prominent in airport carparks.
The reason for all of these abandoned luxury vehicles is also quite interesting. The UAE operates under Sharia law. Under Sharia law, such luxuries as bankruptcy and repayment plans don’t exist like we are used to in Australia, not paying your debts is actually a criminal offence which means there is the very real possibility of finding yourself in a UAE prison. A far from attractive prospect.
This includes falling behind on car payments, cheques bouncing etc.
Like us, many don’t fancy the idea of prison so instead decide to flee the country, leaving their precious luxury cars behind to gather dust often with the key in the ignition. These cars will sit for around 15 days before they are collected by police, if still not claimed (most never are obviously) they are then auctioned off for a relative steal.
As you can see, this is not limited to ‘ordinary’ Mercedes-Benz but also includes high performance supercars such as the Mercedes-Benz SL 65 AMG and Honda NSX, both dream worthy supercars unattainable for 99% of us, but hastily abandoned nonetheless.
This has become an increasing trend since many took out huge loans when oil was a higher price and during the pre-GFC period. When harder times struck these factors combined to form this interesting phenomena .
The current figure is placed at on average 3000 cars per year and shows no signs of slowing.
The lesson here? As tempting as it is, don’t over extend yourself financially to keep up appearances.