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Dubai is located on the Eastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula, in the south west corner of the Arabian Gulf. It is extremely well known for its warm hospitality and rich cultural heritage, and the Emirati people are welcoming and generous in their approach to visitors. With year-round sunshine, intriguing deserts, beautiful beaches, luxurious hotels and shopping malls, fascinating heritage attractions and a thriving business community, Dubai receives millions of leisure and business visitors each year from around the world.

The local currency is the dirham, which is pegged at AED 3.67 to 1 US dollar. Dubai is tolerant and cosmopolitan and all visitors are welcome. However, Islam is a way of life in the city, and therefore tourists should adopt a certain level of cultural and religious sensitivity for the duration of their stay.

The economy of Dubai was once built upon the revenues of the oil industry. Today however, that industry only comprises 3% of its US$46 billion yearly revenue. The majority of its revenue right now comes from tourism and its off shore businesses. Because of the shift from an oil based economy into a tourism and service oriented economy, Dubai has become one of the worlds most important ports of call and tourist destination. Its oil industry still produces around 240,000 barrels of oil per day but its oil reserves are getting low and are expected to run out in 20 years.

When the government of Dubai decided to shift its attention to service oriented businesses, many foreign businesses such as banks soon set up its headquarters in Dubai. The Jebel Ali port which was constructed in 1970 soon attracted more businesses in this city. The port is the largest man made harbor in the world today. Today, many more hubs are being created to further invite a broad range of businesses from IT to finance. There are industry specific hubs in Dubai with advantages to those who want to set up in them. Examples of these industry specific hubs are the Dubai Internet City and the Dubai Media City.

Since its market is growing, the government of Dubai also set up its secondary market which is the Dubai Financial Market in March 2000. This markets purpose is in trading of securities and bonds which could be local or foreign. This markets shares as of the fourth quarter of 2006 was worth US$95 billion.

Because many businesses have now set up their offices in Dubai, the real estate which was low many years ago has now become valuable. Constructions of many buildings are going on in Dubai right now, a sign that the economy is really booming. Many tall skyscrapers could be seen in the city including the Emirates Towers and the Burj Khalifa which is now the tallest structure in the world.

Old Dubai
Dubai in the 60’s

Old Dubai
Palm Jumeirah

Old Dubai
Burj Al Arab

Old Dubai
Burj Khalifa