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Emiratis fork out $6.3 million for 'vanity car plates' Open in fullscreen

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Emiratis fork out $6.3 million for 'vanity car plates'

Vanity plates are popular and sought after in the Gulf [Screenshot RTA/Twitter]

Date of publication: 8 April, 2019

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Plate number W12 sold for more than $1 million after a tense bidding war in a Dubai auction for 'vanity' car plates.
A UAE auction for VIP number plates fetched more than $6.3million in Dubai on Saturday, where millionaires fought for some of the most sought after car registrations in the world.

Plate number W12 sold for more than $1 million after a tense bidding war at the Dubai event. 

Z20 and Z222 were the second and third most expensive, pulling in $760,000 and $476,000 respectively.

The obsession with "exclusive" luxury number plates venture beyond the borders of the UAE and into the wider Gulf region.

A Qatari auction for exclusive licence numbers raised more than $4.6 million in 2016, in the latest frenzied spending on "vanity plates" in the oil-rich Gulf.

The event, hosted online by Qatar's ministry of interior, was open to the public and lasted for four hours.

Three of the 25 licence plate numbers sold on the night cost more than half a million US dollars each, while the cheapest plate going for $52,000.

"People usually prefer three- or four-digit numbers, yet the symmetry in the six-digit numbers make them eye-catching and some people find them to be a good omen, too," a local who spoke to Al-Sharq said.

In June of the same year, an Emirati businessman made headlines after to splashing out on the novelty 'number one' number plate in Dubai.

Arif Ahmed al-Zarouni paid almost $5 million for the most expensive licence plate in Dubai, with reports suggesting auction bids shot to $272,000 in under just one minute.

In 2008, an Emirati forked out $14.2 million dollars at an auction for Abu Dhabi's "number one" plate.

Between 2015-2018, Dubai police said 799 cases of licence plate theft were reported.

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