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Hey big spender!

Credit card penetration is low in the Middle East (around 5%), but those who have them spend well.

Credit card penetration is low in the Middle East (around 5%), but those who have them spend well. Over the course of financial year 1999, each Visa cardholder worldwide spent an average total of $2,034 on his or her card.

The region’s average is far higher at $2,600, but a look at the country by country breakdown shows that there are some serious big spenders in the Gulf countries. At the top end of the scale, each Saudi Arabian owning a credit card spent an average of $7200 on the plastic during 1999.

Average VISA cardholder spend per country in Middle East during FY ’99
Saudi: $7,200
Kuwait & Qatar: $6,700
Egypt: $4,400
UAE: $4,200
Bahrain: $4,100
Jordan: $3,300
Oman: $2,700
Lebanon: $2,200

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