Monday, 5 January 2009

Dubai Villa Evictions - reaction #1

s long as people are waiting in line to come here, why should the empowered authorities not try to take every hard-earned Dirham out of our pockets? While everybody -including my family- continues to complain about, and suffer from, the ever increasing cost of living here no laws are implemented to protect or improve our miserable lot.

Residents need to put themselves on the other side of the table briefly when assessing this topic. If this were YOUR country, would you sanction foreigners working on your soil sending their earnings back home? Or would you implement ways and means to ensure their meagre earnings were spent in your country? The strategic plan calls for chipping away at your earnings one Dirham or one Riyal at a time, be it through Salik or Empost fee increases, to ensure your earnings stay HERE. Have you noticed that the prices of US or dollar-denominated goods have increased on par with products which are sourced in other currency denominations, such at Sterling or Euro? While the Dirham is officially tied to the US dollar with a constant exchange rate the selection of US-made groceries has gone up in price by 50+ percent?

Rather than airing complaints in public, these matters need to be addressed in personal letters or emails to appropriate local government officials, perhaps through your Embassy / Consulate, as a matter of international interest. My Consulate could care less, suggesting I go home rather than disrupt the cocktail party circuit they enjoy. At least at home the media finds such tales of woe and despair fascinating, eager to publish them. As do the late-night talk-shows on TV.

The choice is ultimately YOURS - work here, spend your earnings, fall into debt. Use your end-of-service gratuity to pay off your debt before you leave or just abscond as so many seem to do who are unable to repay their loans? You decide. Scores are waiting to take your place at a lower salary than yours. They too will learn the hard way that there's no long-term future here.