Sofia, a 34-year-old Frenchwoman, moved here a year ago to take a job in advertising, so confident about Dubai's fast-growing economy that she bought an apartment for almost $300,000 with a 15-year mortgage.
Now, like many of the foreign workers who make up 90 percent of the population here, she has been laid off and faces the prospect of being forced to leave this Persian Gulf city -- or worse.
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