EB5 Investors Magazine Volume 7, Issue 1 - Page 55

EB5INVESTORS.COM 53 SAFEGUARDING CAPITAL A RAINFALL OF OPPORTUNITIES Even if you’re dealing with a proud native Emirati who has no interest in moving to the United States or sending his children overseas, you can still appeal to his bottom line. Several surveys have shown a steadily shrinking risk appetite among the wealthy in the Middle East. For example, in 2014, 90 percent of HNWIs in the UAE considered growing their wealth a greater priority than preserving wealth. In 2018, that dropped to only 62 percent focused on growing rather than protecting their wealth. 5 Yet in the same time period, interest in American investments has plummeted. Asia, the non-Gulf Cooperation Counil Middle East region and Europe, in that order, are the preferred regions to invest in today. Only 17 percent of those polled considered North America their first choice for new investments. 6 Hopefully, this advice have sparked your creativity and relieved some of the stress caused by recent changes in the industry. The times are a changing, but the sky is far from falling. In fact, it’s raining opportunities to rope in a new breed of well-heeled clients. No matter how frustrating it is to pivot and adapt our pitches for a new and more skeptical audience, don’t forget that the incredible value of a green card for Middle Eastern investors hasn’t changed. Which means that any company that can work around the obstacles and better communicate that value to investors will not only survive, but thrive as they stand head and shoulders above the competition in this more challenging environment. That might make for grim reading at first glance, but in practical terms, this gives you two hidden opportunities to better show off the value of your proposition. The first is wealth conservation. While returns in the United States, and especially in these regional investment centers, won’t match their favorite investments in emerging markets across Asia and the Middle East, that’s because the U.S. real estate market is far safer. When evaluating macroeconomic risk, the U.S. market is supported by a much more diverse economy that can absorb financial shocks without crashing real estate prices. For example, a change in government, currency fluctuation or sudden drop/rise in oil prices won’t suddenly put their project in the United States at risk the same way it would in a developing nation’s economy. This is not to mention the stronger regulatory oversight in America that greatly reduces the risk posed from corruption or less-than-transparent accounting practices. Second is control and new oppor tunities. When investing in any foreign land, you will have to rely on third-party agents. But having permanent residency in the United States gives you greater control and oversight of your investments, the opportunity to sidestep foreign ownership restrictions, and grants several ancillary bonuses for you and your family. The dist inct ion bet ween a foreig n investor and immigrant investor is no minor point. Some of the most lucrative investment options in the United States are subject to a variety of restrictions and red tape on foreig n ow nership, which generally don’t apply to permanent residents. That green card also allows you to open up U.S. financial accounts, instead of relying on intermediaries. In the event of legal trouble, as a resident you have more and easier options to sue the other party in your local ju r i sd ic t ion i n stead of b e i ng force d to re ly on contractual arbitration clauses. A bbas H ashmi is an investment banker who specializes in global family office administration and has investor immigration expertise. Hashmi has carved his space and been a leader in EB-5, spearheading marketing initiatives in South Asia and the Middle East prior to the Chinese retrogression. Hashmi is an acclaimed speaker, invited to conferences internationally to speak about various topics, including wealth management, next-generation wealth planning, entrepreneurship and investor immigration. Hashmi has offices in New York, Hong Kong, Dubai, India, Pakistan and the Philippines.   Sources 1 Emirates Investment Bank. (2018) GCC Wealth Insight Report 2018. P. 25. Retrieved on 12 December 2018 at: https://www.eibank.com/assets/pdf/GCC_ Wealth_Insight_Report_2018.pdf 2 US Customs and Border Protection. (2017, June 28). Can a U.S. lawful permanent resident leave multiple times and return? Retrieved on 12 December 2018 from: https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/820/~/can-a-u.s.-lawful- permanent-resident-leave-multiple-times-and-return 3 Sheng, E. (2017, January 26). New proposal seeks to raise minimum investment for EB-5 visa. Forbes Online. Retrieved on 12 December 2018 from: https://www. forbes.com/sites/ellensheng/2017/01/26/new-proposal-seeks-to-raise- minimum-investment-for-eb-5-visa/#4ca2decd2ee1 4 Maceda, C. (2018, November 26). Why 38,000 multi-millionaires move to the UAE. Gulf News Business. Retrieved on 12 December 2018 from: https:// gulfnews.com/business/personal-finance/why-38000-multi-millionaires-move- to-the-uae-1.1543228628312 5 Emirates Investment Bank. (2018) GCC Wealth Insight Report 2018. P. 31. Retrieved on 12 December 2018 from: https://www.eibank.com/assets/pdf/ GCC_Wealth_Insight_Report_2018.pdf 6 Emirates Investment Bank. (2018) GCC Wealth Insight Report 2018. P. 34. Retrieved on 12 December 2018 from: https://www.eibank.com/assets/pdf/ GCC_Wealth_Insight_Report_2018.pdf