History of Dubai, the Arab Hong Kong

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The history of Dubai, the economic center par excellence in the contemporary world but not only

History of Dubai, sister of Abu Dhabi

The Emirate of Dubai area has been inhabited since the 3rd millennium BC. remaining however, as well as many surrounding territories, virtually unknown for many centuries. The economy was in fact based above all on agricultural fishing, which was also not very interesting in terms of position, given the boats of the time. However, it was part of both the Seleucid Empire and the Umayyad Empire, the latter also bringing Islam to the region, but not taking too much care of the other sectors. We will have to wait for the arrival of the Bani Yas before seeing a real change of course in the region.

Al Fahidi Fort, built in 1787, is the first building in the city of Dubai

The territory was conquered in the 17th century by the emirs of Abu Dhabi from whom, in 1833, the branch of the al Maktoum will detach, and they will carry out a peaceful conquest of the city, transforming its economy in a few years.

Arab Hong Kong

The arrival of the British and the consequent birth of the Truce States will push Dubai to assume an increasingly important role within the Persian Gulf, enacting increasingly liberal policies aimed at maximizing the flow of goods. With the passage of time, in fact, this sea area had become increasingly central for trade between England and India, pushing the former to a real military intervention. Realizing the relevance of their position, lower and lower taxes were imposed on foreigners, choosing to become a British protectorate to lower them further.

Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, current Emir of Dubai

With the Second World War, however, many of the previous routes were changed, moreover the creation of artificial pearls demolished the local market, leading to great political instability in the country, overcome only in 1966 with the discovery of oil.

Economic pole

The grafting of so much wealth gave Dubai the tools for a very rapid recovery, moreover, thanks to the alliance with Abu Dhabi and the subsequent political independence, the emirate steadily grew in importance, earning the reputation of “Arab Hong Kong”. This is because, as the city today is part of China, it enjoys special statutes in economic and legislative terms, in order to maintain great decision-making autonomy today.


This meant that the city developed beyond oil, binding, unlike Abu Dhabi, above all to the economy rather than to raw materials. The incredible architectural evolution and the conditions of life is mainly due to these factors that make it, today more than ever, one of the main economic poles in the world, especially the Arab one.

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