Thursday, February 5, 2009

"Dubai Is Emptying Out"

Remember not long ago when Dubai was concerned the shiny light of prosperity among a growing world of financial gloom?

Well, that shine is gaining some serious luster according to this article from the UK TimesOnline:
For many expatriate workers in Dubai it was the ultimate symbol of their tax-free wealth: a luxurious car that few could have afforded on the money they earned at home.

Now, faced with crippling debts as a result of their high living and Dubai’s fading fortunes, many expatriates are abandoning their cars at the airport and fleeing home rather than risk jail for defaulting on loans.

Police have found more than 3,000 cars outside Dubai’s international airport in recent months. Most of the cars – four-wheel drives, saloons and “a few” Mercedes – had keys left in the ignition.

Some had used-to-the-limit credit cards in the glove box. Others had notes of apology attached to the windscreen.

“Every day we find more and more cars,” said one senior airport security official, who did not want to be named. “Christmas was the worst – we found more than two dozen on a single day.”
Surely, this is a first. Drive to the airport, skip the short term and long term parking lots and, instead, leave the Benzer in the forever term parking lot. With the max'd out credit cards next to the keys (nice touch).

Wethinks that Mr. Perot might be hearing a new giant sucking sound out of that particular desert kingdom real soon...