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Written by Tanmayee on November 14, 2022 Share on

Ever Wondered What Makes Dubai So Rich and Prosperous?

Ever wondered what makes Dubai so rich? I did too. At first, I thought it was their oil that made them rich, but boy I was wrong. The oil in Dubai was discovered just 50 years ago and it accounts for only one per cent of its earnings. So, what makes Dubai so rich? Curious to know how Dubai gained all its wealth? Well, just keep reading to know about the same before booking Dubai tour packages.

Where it all started?

Old Dubai Souk Marina
Image credit: Wikimedia

Back in the 1770s until the late 1930s, the primary source of income in the Trucial Coast of what is now the UAE was a pearl industry. Pearl diving was thought to be a humble beginning in trade for the residents of the Persian Gulf, but it set the foundation for something much larger later on.

You might also like: Dubai Heritage and diving village

What actually makes Dubai rich?

In the late 1950s, soon after the clash between Dubai and Abu Dhabi for oil, Dubai struggled and didn’t have any high oil revenues, unlike Abu Dhabi, which thrived. That is when, the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, decided something had to change. So, he started investing in infrastructure and built Dubai’s first airport in 1960.

Also read: History of Dubai

1. Infrastructure and Tourism in Dubai

A click in Dubai
Photo by Nathan John on Unsplash

This also paved the way for the construction of several other infrastructure projects, which made them realize that infrastructure is a long-term strategy and gave hope to their economy. This led to a boost in tourism, and whatever little oil they discovered, was used in building the Dubai city we now see. Dubai has grown to become one of the top tourist destinations in the world, thanks to its state of the art infrastructure. The tourism industry makes up to 20 per cent of Dubai’s Gross Domestic Product.


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2. Global Business in Dubai

The infrastructure also helped boom the trade industry. Dubai established its first free zone in 1985; Jafza, which was the largest free zone in the world. This also led to 30 more free zones that offer tax breaks, custom duty benefits and exemptions for foreigners. This resulted in attracting more global businesses. Many of these Jafza companies contribute to 20% of foreign investment in Dubai. And approximately 144,000 employees are generating $80 billion in non-oil money. That’s 21 per cent of the city’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

And that’s how Dubai became so rich

Dubai continued to become a dynamic and diversified economy with revenue generated through different streams. Most of the city’s GDP is non-oil based, contrary to the popular belief. The majority of its money comes from the production of goods, provision of services and Tourism. I guess that answers all our questions on what makes Dubai so rich?

FAQs on Dubai

Q: Why is Dubai so popular?

A: Dubai is a remarkable destination which is well-known for its futuristic architecture, luxury shopping, vibrant nightlife, desert landscapes, artificial islands, and high-end tourism experiences.

Q: Which are must-visit attractions in Dubai?

A: It is tough to choose some places out of plenty of amazing and futuristic attractions. You can visit Burj Khalifa (the world’s tallest building), the Dubai Mall, Palm Jumeirah, Burj Al Arab (iconic luxury hotel), and many more places.

Q: Is Dubai safe place for tourist?

A: Yes, Dubai is very safe place for tourists as it has low crime and very strict laws.

Q: Is alcohol available in Dubai?

A: Yes, Alcohol is available in licensed hotels, restaurants, and clubs, but drinking in public places is strictly prohibited.

Q: How Dubai became so rich?

A: The way Dubai focuses on production of goods, provision of services and Tourism, The majority of its money comes from these sectors.

Plan Trip with PickYourTrail

If you haven’t been to the extravagant city of Dubai, then I’d suggest you start planning a vacation soon! Experience all the richness the city has to offer. Pickyourtrail has some of the best Dubai packages to offer and if you want to craft your own Dubai itinerary. So pack your bags and get ready for a luxurious international vacation. It’s time to unwrap the world with Pickyourtrail! Happy travelling! Log on to to know more.

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