UAE consumer spending rises 13 percent in 2015

Overall card spending in the UAE grew by 9 percent in the same time frame

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Consumer spending in the UAE increased by 13 percent in 2015 compared to the year before, according to a report by payment processing firm Network International.

Overall card spending in the UAE grew by 9 percent in the same time frame, the firm reported, adding that spending on cards issued in the country ranges from between $2.45 billion to $2.72 per month.

“The UAE economy, driven by diversification into non-oil revenues, has borne resilience to current market dynamics, as indicated by our analysis of card-spending data over the past year,” Network’s chief commercial officer David Mountain said, according to a press release.

Network 2015’s consumer spending report indicates that domestic spenders were the highest spending group in the UAE last year with the United States, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait also making it to the top spenders list.

Spending in the Gulf - excluding Iran - increased by 15 percent last year while North American spends showed a 12 percent growth. Among the top 7 tourist spenders, Qatar displaced Russia to take the fourth spot overall in the UAE.

Worldwide, the steep decline in oil prices along with the devaluation of the Russian rouble saw Russian spends drop to nearly half as much when compared to 2014. Chinese card spends also declined by 13 percent in 2015 as compared to 2014, Network added.

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