Prologue

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Photography by Gabriel Rotich, A24 Media

One's destination is never a place but a new way of looking at things.”

Henry Miller

Where's the best place in the world to put your money?

So far this decade, it's a country deemed so doomed it's listed with the ten most fragile states; a place where modern-day slavery, violence and the breakdown of law and order rank it among the three worst hellholes on the planet.14

Between deadly attacks by the Taliban, strikes by US drones and the secret missions to monitor Osama bin Laden, shares in Karachi soared, extending 1000% gains this century.5

It's not just Pakistan.

In the face of terror and global economic shocks, some of the biggest investment rewards are turning up in the most vulnerable of places. Assets in impoverished, radicalized or seemingly impenetrable corners of the world are often wildly discounted. Even a glimmer of hope for political stability or improvement in the economy can spark a major rally (Table 0.1).

Table 0.1 Plucky seven

Best performing primary equity indexes this decade
Index Return
Karachi 100 index 176%
Dubai Financial Market 149%
Philippine SE Index 145%
Stock Exchange of Thailand 120%
OMX Copenhagen 20 95%
Qatar Exchange Index 92%
Nairobi All Share 92%
Best performing primary equity indexes this millennium
Index Return
Mongolia Stock Exchange Top 20 Index 3207%
Montenegro ...

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