Why Are 4300 Millionaires Projected to Leave India for the UAE in 2024?

The movement of millionaires across borders is not a new phenomenon, but recent reports highlight a significant trend among Indian millionaires opting to relocate abroad, with the UAE emerging as a top destination. According to Henley & Partners, an international investment migration advisory firm, around 4,300 millionaires are projected to leave India this year. This trend raises several questions about its implications for India’s economy, the reasons behind this migration, and the benefits and challenges it presents.

Current Statistics

Henley & Partners’ report provides a detailed look at the projected movements of high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs). In 2024, approximately 4,300 Indian millionaires are expected to migrate, a slight decrease from the 5,100 who left the country last year. Despite being the fastest-growing economy globally, India ranks third in terms of millionaire migration, following China and the UK.

India’s Economic Context

India’s economy has been growing rapidly, making it an attractive hub for business and investment. However, despite this growth, the country experiences a significant outflow of wealthy individuals. Interestingly, while India has overtaken China as the world’s most populous nation, its net millionaire exodus is less than 30% of China’s, indicating that other factors beyond economic growth are influencing this migration trend.

Wealth Growth in India

Over the past decade, India has seen an 85% increase in wealth, creating many new millionaires. The country’s ability to generate new high-net-worth individuals is impressive, mitigating concerns over the migration of existing millionaires. This robust wealth creation suggests that India continues to thrive economically, even as some of its wealthy citizens choose to move abroad.

Reasons for Migration

Safety and Security

Safety is a paramount concern for many wealthy individuals. The desire for a secure environment where their assets and families are protected is a significant driver for migration.

Financial Considerations and Tax Benefits

Financial incentives, including favorable tax regimes, play a crucial role. Many countries offer attractive tax benefits that are hard to resist for those looking to preserve and grow their wealth.

Retirement and Lifestyle

The allure of a better lifestyle and retirement options cannot be understated. Many millionaires seek destinations that offer a higher quality of life, better amenities, and a conducive environment for their post-retirement years.

Business Opportunities

Expanding business horizons is another major reason. Countries like the UAE provide a conducive business environment, with fewer regulatory hurdles and a supportive ecosystem for entrepreneurs.

Education and Healthcare

The prospect of superior educational and healthcare facilities also motivates many families to relocate. Ensuring the best possible future for their children and access to top-tier healthcare is a priority.

Popular Destinations

UAE as a Primary Destination

The UAE stands out as the preferred choice for many Indian millionaires. Its strategic location, tax-friendly policies, and robust infrastructure make it an ideal destination.

USA as a Top Choice

The USA remains a popular destination due to its diverse opportunities, strong economy, and excellent quality of life.

Other Notable Destinations

Countries like Australia, Canada, and European nations also attract a fair share of Indian millionaires, each offering unique advantages and opportunities.

UAE’s Investment Advisory Sector

The UAE’s attractiveness is further bolstered by the expansion of Indian private banks and wealth management platforms into the region. Institutions like Nuvama Private and LGT Wealth Management have been instrumental in supporting Indian clients with global diversification and expansion needs. Similarly, Kotak Mahindra Bank and 360 ONE Wealth are ensuring that Indian families receive competitive wealth management services on the ground in the UAE.

Impact on Local Economies

Contribution to Foreign Exchange Reserves

Migrating millionaires bring substantial assets with them, contributing significantly to the foreign exchange reserves of their new countries.

Stimulation of Local Stock Markets

Their investments often stimulate local stock markets through equity placements, enhancing market liquidity and stability.

Job Creation Through New Businesses

Businesses established by millionaires can create numerous high-paying jobs, benefiting the middle class and boosting the local economy. Companies like Microsoft, Apple, and Tesla have shown how such ventures can transform economies, a trend that could be mirrored by Indian entrepreneurs abroad.

Retaining Economic Ties

Despite relocating, many millionaires retain business interests and second homes in India, indicating ongoing economic ties. This dual presence helps maintain a flow of capital and expertise between India and their new countries, fostering economic interconnectedness.

Case Studies of Successful Migrant Entrepreneurs

Microsoft, Apple, and Tesla as Examples

The success stories of companies like Microsoft, Apple, and Tesla highlight the potential impact of entrepreneurial ventures led by millionaires. These companies have created jobs, driven innovation, and significantly contributed to the economies of their respective countries.

Potential Parallels for Indian Millionaires

Indian millionaires relocating to places like the UAE might replicate such success, leveraging their business acumen and financial resources to establish impactful enterprises.

Challenges and Opportunities

Managing the Outflow

The migration of millionaires presents challenges, such as potential losses in talent and capital. However, it also opens up opportunities for strategic engagement and international collaboration.

Potential Strategies for Retention

To mitigate the outflow, India could enhance its domestic business environment, offer competitive tax policies, and improve infrastructure to retain its wealthy citizens.

Opportunities for Growth

Continued wealth creation and the potential return of expatriates with new skills and networks can drive further economic growth in India.

The Future of Millionaire Migration

Trends and Projections

The trend of millionaire migration is likely to continue, driven by global mobility, economic opportunities, and lifestyle preferences. Understanding these trends can help countries craft policies to attract and retain high-net-worth individuals.

Implications for India’s Economy

For India, the focus should be on balancing the outflow with robust wealth creation and maintaining strong economic ties with its diaspora to harness their potential for national growth.


The migration of Indian millionaires is a multifaceted phenomenon driven by a mix of personal, financial, and professional reasons. While the exodus might seem concerning, India’s robust economic growth and wealth creation capabilities suggest a balanced outlook. By fostering a conducive environment for business and living, India can continue to thrive economically, even as some of its wealthy citizens seek opportunities abroad.

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