The Russian diaspora in Dubai has been growing due to the city’s neutral stance on the conflict in Ukraine and its friendly and welcoming environment towards Russians. Many Russians see Dubai as a haven away from the anti-Russian attitudes in Europe.

This influx of wealthy Russian immigrants has resulted in extraordinarily high demand for homes, sports cars, etc., with real estate agents reporting one of the biggest bull markets ever. Furthermore, more Russians have been visiting the Emirates since the pandemic began. Despite limited freedom of assembly and effectively illegal protests, Dubai is seen as an untethered and more stable alternative to other cities where the Russian diaspora has settled.

To gain more insights into public opinion on the recent developments between Russia and Ukraine, Real Research launched a survey on the influx of rich Russians leaving for Dubai. The survey offers valuable information on the views and perspectives of people worldwide, providing a better understanding of the ongoing conflict and its potential impact on global politics and society and why elite Russians are flocking to Dubai.


  • 53.77% are still following Russia-Ukraine updates.
  • Nearly 80% (79.79%) are aware of the influx of Russian immigrants in the UAE.
  • 15.03% say UAE’s neutral stance on conflict a likely reason for Russian business shift to Dubai.

The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine has sparked a surprising trend in recent months, as wealthy Russians are reportedly flocking to Dubai to escape their home country’s political and economic instability. According to a recent report by The New York Times, Dubai has become a haven for Russian oligarchs, businessmen, and expatriates, seeking a haven from the uncertainties of the current geopolitical climate.

This influx of wealthy Russians has fueled a boom in Dubai’s luxury real estate market and has brought a new level of attention to the city’s growing reputation as a global hub for commerce and investment.

Based on our survey results, a significant majority of respondents, 80%, are aware of the trend of rich Russians moving to Dubai. However, it is essential to note that 20% of respondents indicated that they were unaware of this trend.

Given the recent developments in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, it is interesting to note that a significant percentage of our respondents are following updates on the situation. Over half of the respondents (54%) reported actively following the news, with an additional 38% stating that they do so occasionally.

This conflict has captured the attention of many individuals and has become a topic of interest and concern for many respondents. However, it is worth noting that 8% of respondents reported not following the updates, indicating a potential lack of interest or awareness in the ongoing conflict.

The following poll asked why Russian businesses have shifted to Dubai. A majority said that it is likely because Dubai has maintained a neutral ground regarding the Russia-Ukraine war, and non-existent Anti-Russian propaganda (15%). Followed by Dubai’s economy offering suitable grounds for business enterprises (13%), personal safety (12%), and a better quality of life (10%). It is also noted that there is no hostility or difference in the treatment of Russians (8%).

Figure 1 Reasons why Russian businesses have shifted to Dubai.
Figure 1: Reasons why Russian businesses have shifted to Dubai.

Stance on UAE’s Neutrality

According to the survey results, 40% stood in favor of UAE’s neutrality regarding the Russia-Ukraine war, while 29% of respondents took an Anti-Russian stance and stood against it. Notably, 32% were uncertain about the issue.

Furthermore, we asked the respondents about their opinion on UAE’s stance towards the Russia-Ukraine war. Results revealed that 24% said UAE should take an Anti-Russian stand, 24% said UAE should impose sanctions on Russia for the Russia-Ukraine war, and 29% said UAE should maintain its policy of neutrality, without taking an Anti-Russian position.

Figure 2 Respondents’ stance on Dubai allowing Russians without any sanctions.
Figure 2: Respondents’ stance on Dubai allowing Russians without any sanctions.

Similarly, figure 2 above reveals respondents’ support for Dubai allowing Russians to accumulate wealth without any sanctions. While 22% highly supported Dubai allowing Russians to continue to accumulate wealth without any sanctions, 26% somewhat supported it. On the other hand, 27% were somewhat against it and 11% were highly against it.

The following poll asked a similar question, “Do you support the Dubai government serving as a war refuge for the wealthy Russian immigrants?” 27% highly supported it and 29% somewhat supported the decision. In contrast, 23% were somewhat against it and 8% were highly against it.

How Would Russians’ Settling in UAE Affect the Economy?

The survey results indicate that there are several ways in which the influx of wealthy Russians could positively affect Dubai. 19% of respondents thought the influx would diversify Dubai’s economy by attracting investments in various sectors. Meanwhile, 15% of the respondents believed that it would enhance the city’s reputation as a global hub for business, trade, and tourism, while another 15% of the respondents also believed that the influx would strengthen cultural ties between Russia and the UAE, potentially leading to more cultural exchange between the two countries.

Additionally, 13% believed that it would contribute to the growth of the local economy and 12% thought it would lead to an increase in demand for high-end luxury goods and services. Interestingly,

Negative Effects of Wealthy Russians Settling in Dubai

Overall, the poll results suggest that the influx of wealthy Russians could have a positive impact on Dubai in various ways. However, the survey results also suggest that the influx of wealthy Russians could have some negative consequences for Dubai.

Figure 3 How the influx would negatively impact Dubai
Figure 3: How the influx would negatively impact Dubai

13% of respondents were concerned that it could lead to increased income inequality in the city, as wealthier Russians may be able to afford high-end luxury goods and services that are not accessible to the rest of the population.

Moreover, another 13% of respondents were worried that increased demand for goods and services could lead to resource scarcity in Dubai. Additionally, 11% of respondents believed that the influx of wealthy Russians could drive up real estate prices in the city, making it even more expensive for residents to live and work in Dubai.

Furthermore, a significant portion of respondents (20%) believed that the influx of wealthy Russians could negatively affect the UAE’s international relations with other countries. Finally, 17% of respondents were concerned that the influx of Russians could create social tension due to cultural differences between the two groups.


Survey TitleSurvey on the Influx of Rich Russians Leaving for Dubai
DurationMarch 23 – March 30, 2022
Number of Participants10,000
DemographicsMales and females, aged 21 to 99
Participating Countries Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, China (Hong Kong) China (Macao), China (Taiwan), Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Greanada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Ivory Coast, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Lithuania, Malaysia, Maldives, Maluritania, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar [Burma], Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.