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Abu Dhabi The Richest City in the World أبوظبي أغنى مدينة في العالم

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Published on Jul 21, 2008

MSN : المسنجر

UAE@UAE.NET

Abu Dhabi (Arabic: أبو ظبي‎ transliteration: abū ẓābī, literally Father of gazelle) is the capital and second most populous city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), after Dubai. It is also the seat of government of the emirate of Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi lies on a T-shaped island jutting into the Arabian Gulf from the central western coast. Approximately 1.45 million people live in Abu Dhabi as of 2008, of whom 80% were expatriates. One of the world's largest producers of oil, Abu Dhabi has actively attempted to diversify its economy in recent years through investments in financial services and tourism. Abu Dhabi is ruled by Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who is also the President of the UAE.
Parts of Abu Dhabi were settled in the 3rd millennium BC and its early history fits the nomadic herding and fishing pattern typical of the broader region. Modern Abu Dhabi traces its origins to the rise of an important tribal confederation, the Bani Yas, in the late 18th century, which also subsequently assumed control of the town of Dubai. In the 19th century the Dubai and Abu Dhabi branches parted ways.

Into the mid-20th century, the economy of Abu Dhabi continued to be sustained mainly by camel herding, production of dates and vegetables at the inland oases of Al Ain and Liwa Oasis, and fishing and pearl diving off the coast of Abu Dhabi city, which was occupied mainly during the summer months. Most dwellings in Abu Dhabi city were, at this time constructed of palm fronds (barasti), with the wealthier families occupying mud huts. The growth of the cultured pearl industry in the first half of the twentieth century created hardship for residents of Abu Dhabi as pearls represented the largest export and main source of cash earnings.

In 1939, Sheikh Shakhbut Bin-Sultan Al Nahyan granted petroleum concessions, and oil was first found in 1958. At first, oil money had a marginal impact. A few lowrise concrete buildings were erected, and the first paved road was completed in 1961, but Sheikh Shakbut, uncertain whether the new oil royalties would last, took a cautious approach, preferring to save the revenue rather than investing it in development. His brother, Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, saw that oil wealth had the potential to transform Abu Dhabi. The ruling Al Nahyan family decided that Sheikh Zayed should replace his brother as ruler and carry out his vision of developing the country. On August 6, 1966, with the assistance of the British, Sheikh Zayed became the new ruler. [1]

With the announcement by the UK in 1968 that it would withdraw from the Persian Gulf area by 1971, Sheikh Zayed became the main driving force behind the formation of the United Arab Emirates.

After the Emirates gained independence in 1971, oil wealth continued to flow to the area and traditional mud-brick huts were rapidly replaced with banks, boutiques and modern highrises.

The emirate of Abu Dhabi is located in the oil-rich and strategic United Arab Emirates and is an active member of the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC). It borders with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (south) and the Sultanate of Oman (east). The emirate borders the emirate of Dubai to its northeast. In the north is the Arabian Gulf.

Abu Dhabi city is on an island located less than a quarter-kilometer from the mainland and is joined to the mainland by the Maqta and Mussafah Bridges. A third bridge, designed by Zaha Hadid, is currently under construction. Bridges connecting to Reem Island and Saadiyat Island are also under construction.

Most of Abu Dhabi is located on the island itself, but it has many suburbs on the mainland for example: the Khalifa Cities, Between Two Bridges, and Mussafah Residential.
Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan is the hereditary ruler of Abu Dhabi (UAE). He is the son of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the first president of the United Arab Emirates.
Abu Dhabi is the wealthiest emirate of the UAE in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and per capita income. The average net worth for Abu Dhabi's 420,000 citizens is AED 62 million (US$ 17 million), and more than $1 trillion is invested worldwide in this city alone. The GDP per capita also reached $63,000 [2], which is far above the average income of the United Arab Emirates and which ranks third in the world after Luxembourg and Norway. Abu Dhabi is also planning many future projects sharing with the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) and taking 29% of all the GCC future plannings. The United Arab Emirates is a fast-growing economy: in 2006 the per capita income grew by 9%, providing a GDP per capita of $49,700 and ranking third in the world at Purchasing power parity. Abu Dhabi plays a large role in the world economy. Abu Dhabi's sovereign wealth fund, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), currently estimated at US$ 875 billion, is the world's wealthiest soverign fund, in terms of total asset value.

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