IT’S not your usual city problem. Forget unemployment, crime and housing issues, Dubai is suffering from a case of abandoned expensive cars.
In the last five years, luxury supercars including Porsches, Ferraris and Mercedes Benz have been abandoned on the streets of Dubai and left at airport parking lots as their owners flee bankruptcy, hit by the financial crisis.
Under Sharia law, the failure to pay back debt is a criminal offence with offenders facing the risk of prison.
The UAE has no bankruptcy laws so there is no protection should you fail to meet your car repayments, pay off your credit card or default on your mortgage.
The result means that expats and locals are ditching their expensive cars to avoid jail time, often with the keys still left in the ignition. It was reported in 2011 that a $2 million rare Ferrari Enzo was even found abandoned in the airport parking lot by police.
According to Gulf News, between 2000-3000 cars are abandoned every year in Dubai. A warning notice is first issued and if the owner fails to appear after 15 days the car is impounded and auctioned off for a fraction of their original price.
It’s good news for car lovers at least who can pick up some serious bargains.