I recently described the American Express Black as the ultimate status symbol for the rich. I was wrong.
Source: Michael Bulcik
Kazakhstan, home of the fictional comic character Borat played in a 2006 movie of the same name by actor Sacha Baron Cohen, announced this week that its bank Kazkommertsbank will issue a status symbol like no other — a diamond-inlaid credit card.
Aptly named the Diamond, the Mastercard will have a 0.02 carat center and a $1,000 annual fee. The bank plans to issue only a total of 1,000 at a rate of 30 a month and apply a credit limit of $50,000, which is about $20,000 higher than the limit on some MasterCard platinum cards.
Kazkommertsbank has received some criticism for releasing the card in the middle of worldwide financial crisis. But Alla Voyakina, head of international payment systems for the issuing bank, said status symbols are always welcome for the rich.
“The crisis is also affecting us, but we are talking about rich people; they can afford to have such cards. It’s a question of prestige to have such cards in your wallet,” she told the Financial Times.
In 1991, Kazakhstan became the last Soviet republic to declare itself independent. Since then, it has used its enormous fossil fuel reserves and abundant supplies of other minerals and metals to become a growing force in the global economy. According to the CIA World Fact Book, Kazakhstan experienced double-digit growth in 2000 – 2001 and continues to grow at 8 percent per year thanks largely to its successful energy sector, economic reform and foreign investment. This increase in wealth has helped create a class of super-rich.
So what can be next to top this feat of consumerist gluttony?
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