Radha Stirling, who has assisted more than 12,000 individuals over the past 12 years operating organisation “Detained in Dubai”, warned Indians to leave the United Arab Emirates in a statement issued today:
“The coronavirus crisis is likely to hurt businesses even more severely than the crash of 2009 and the consequences for expats will potentially be catastrophic. With over 2 million Indian nationals living, working, and running businesses in the UAE; they are the largest foreign population in the country, and will bear the brunt of pandemic’s aftermath.
“Over 10 years ago, the world financial crisis caused expats to abandon cars at airports and even entire villas with their furniture and personal belongings. The expats who made this most difficult decision were the ones that made it home safely. Others, who hoped to ride out the difficult times, ended up either completely penniless and/or subjected to endless financial cases as banks recalled loans unexpectedly and cheques bounced to third parties. Business partners turned on business partners, embezzling joint funds from their companies then wrongfully blaming their partners, leaving honest expats jailed for crimes they didn’t commit and for debt they could not avoid.
“Those who made it out before such events took place were hounded by banks abroad and listed on Interpol’s fugitive database rendering them at risk of arrest and extradition. However, they were in a far better position to keep themselves safe than those who thought they were doing the right thing by staying.
“Coronavirus is far beyond a recession, with borders closing worldwide and Emirates Airlines announcing the cessation of flights from the 25th of March. Those who do not leave promptly may see the repercussions first hand. If they are unable to fulfil orders or service clients, their commitments to others will ultimately fail and they will be subjected to police cases for financial failures. If business does not return to normal and it likely will not, expats will face criminal and civil charges that will either see them locked up or indefinitely stuck in the country.”
Detained in Dubai is therefore advising that expats exit the UAE immediately if they can.
“Of course, no one wants to close down a business that they have been building, and no one wants to abandon financial commitments. What we are advising is more like a strategic retreat. It is time to make hard choices and expats have to be practical and anticipate the likely outcome of what is projected to be a new worldwide recession. It is far safer, and ultimately more responsible for Indian expats to return to India, regroup, and deal with any financial loose ends from a position of security, without the impending threat of imprisonment,” Stirling said.
Detained in Dubai helps expats who face legal issues inside the UAE as well as taking proactive measures to manage negotiations with banks, to resolve private and business disputes and to prevent Interpol listings.
“We have been helping expat business people and investors navigate the often treacherous waters of the UAE for over a decade,” Stirling commented, “We know what to expect, and we can help expats emerge from this crisis unscathed.”