Dubai used to be known as a small fishing village. It was in 1830 when Dubai was taken over by a branch of the Bani Yas tribe from the Liwa oasis led by the Maktoum family who still rule the emirate today.
The most common source of living before were herding sheep and goats, cultivating dates, fishing and diving for pearls. The open-mindedness and attitudes of the emirate’s rulers made Dubai attractive to traders from India and Persia who began to settle in the growing town, which soon developed a strong reputation as the leading entry point for the region.
In 1971 Dubai came together with Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Fujairah and (in 1972) Ras Al Khaimah to create the federation of the United Arab Emirates led by Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan.
The discovery of oil in 1966 dramatically transformed the emirate by allowing the development of the economic and social infrastructure which laid the foundations for today’s modern society. Much of the credit for this development can be traced to the vision of the late Ruler, HH Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, who ensured that Dubai’s oil revenues were deployed to maximum effect. His work has been continued by the present Ruler, HH Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum.