The top 10 countries where expats can live and work


The UAE has been ranked as the fourth best country in the world to live and work, according to HSBC’s latest annual Expat Explorer study.

The Emirates have climbed 10 places from last year on the basis of “strong optimism among expats” in the country, according to the report.

The vast majority of expatriates surveyed in the UAE (82%) are optimistic that life will be more stable and return to normal over the next 12 months despite the global pandemic, above the global average of 35 %.

Up to 53 percent of respondents in the UAE also expect increased income and a better work-life balance (57 percent), according to the report.

The top three reasons cited by expats for choosing to relocate to the UAE are: to improve their income (56%), advance their careers (49%) and improve their quality of life (43%).

Most expats in the UAE (86%) say their overall quality of life is better than in their home country and six in ten intend to stay longer for this reason. According to the study, 11% of those polled said the pandemic had changed their plans for staying in the United Arab Emirates.

Overall, Switzerland was ranked as the top destination in the survey, which surveyed over 20,000 expats around the world.

Among the GCC states, Bahrain and Qatar also ranked first – at 8 and 10 – while overall MENAT (Middle East, North Africa and Turkey) was the top ranked region for the quality of life, with 71% of expats recommending it.

“The United Arab Emirates ranked among the top five places to live and work in the world is inspiring and clearly indicates the enormous potential that drives the economy of this country,” said Abdulfattah Sharaf, CEO of HSBC United Arab Emirates and responsible international.

“The overwhelming sense of optimism among expatriates in the UAE over the next 12 months reflects the authorities’ swift response to address the social and economic impact of the pandemic.

“The UAE’s openness to the diversity of cultures and perspectives is also a key attraction for expats looking to make the country their home,” he added.

Globally, the study found that 67% of those living abroad believe their quality of life is better now than in their home country or region. In addition, 61% of those surveyed said they had changed little in their work situation due to Covid-19.

“Travel and understanding the local culture are now high on the list of priorities for expats in 2021. More traditional factors like career progression remain important, but are less important this year than in others,” he adds. ‘study.


1. Switzerland

2. Australia

3. New Zealand


5. Guernsey

6. Jersey

7. Isle of Man

8. Bahrain

9. Singapore

10. Qatar


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