Dubai's me­te­oric rise

Southasia - - EDITOR’S MAIL -

I must com­mend SouthAsia for print­ing highly in­for­ma­tive ar­ti­cles on the UAE as part of its cover story. The way some UAE states have pro­gressed in a short span of time still sur­prises de­vel­op­ment ex­perts around the world. Un­til a few decades ago, Dubai, for one, used to be a largely desert land. If one sees the old pic­tures of Dubai, they wouldn’t rec­og­nize the city which has com­pletely changed over the years.

Today, some of the most re­mark­able build­ings in Dubai – the Deira Twin Tow­ers, Dubai Creek Tower, Sher­a­ton Dubai Creek, the Na­tional Bank, and the Cham­ber of Com­merce – are lo­cated along the sides of the Dubai Creek. The sit­u­a­tion was com­pletely dif­fer­ent in the 1950s when the same port, from where much of Dubai’s trade took place, housed only a few brick build­ings. The emi­rate didn’t have any traf­fic lights till the 1960s. It is said that the first traf­fic lights were in­stalled in the late 1960s. Dubai’s is surely a suc­cess story that continues to amaze peo­ple around the world. While its rise can be mainly at­trib­uted to petrodol­lars, it would be unjustified not to give credit to its rulers who in­tro­duced busi­ness-friendly poli­cies and lib­er­al­ized the econ­omy to en­cour­age for­eign in­vest­ment. How­ever, there is one thing which was freely available for ev­ery­one in the Dubai of yore but has now been re­stricted to those who hold spe­cific li­censes: al­co­hol!

Melville D’Souza

Kandy, Sri Lanka

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