Information / History & Culture
History of Dubai
The official language of the country is Arabic, however most people in and out of the workplace communicate in English. There are so many different nationalities in Dubai and therefore English finds common ground with most people. The majority of road, shop signs, and restaurant menus etc. are in both English and Arabic.
Historical Time-Line leading to the rise of Dubai
- 1830: The small fishing settlement of Dubai is taken over by a segment of the Bani Yas tribe from the Liwa Oasis, led by the Maktoum family who still, interestingly, rule the emirate today.
- 1892: Foreign traders are drawn into Dubai due to the declaration that they will be exempt from tax, the population doubles and the pearling industry is now booming.
- 1930-1940: The recession hits Dubaiís pearl industry which falls into decline leading to social pressures and feuds between the royals.
- 1958: Sheikh Rashid officially becomes the ruler of Dubai after his fatherís death.
- 1959: The Emir of Kuwait lends Sheik Rahid millions of dollars to renovate the Creek so it can accommodate large ships in order to develop Dubaiís reputation as being a major trading hub.
- 1966: Dubai discovers its own oil, attracting traders to settle in Dubai which in turn enhances economic growth.
- 1968: Dubai begins exporting crude oil and petro-dollars rush in.
- 1973: The Dirham becomes the offical unit of currency in Dubai.
- 1980: Dubaiís annual oil income decreases to US$3.
- 1985: The Emirates airline is established and Dubai plans its reinvention as a tourist destination.
- 1990: Sheik Maktoum takes over as the ruler of Dubai, due to his father, Sheik Rashid, passing away during the first Gulf War.
- 1996: The Dubai shopping festival and the Dubai World Cup are launched and happen to become very popular annual events.
- 1999: One of the tallest hotels in the world, the Burj Al Arab opens, enhancing Dubaiís reputation further as a tourist destination.
- 2003: Dubai is recognised by The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, as a financial hub. Also, at this time the property market in Dubai suddenly grows due to the introduction of freehold properties.