Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan
His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan is a visionary who pioneered and founded the UAE – United Arab Emirates. He is the power who steered Abu Dhabi from a primarily fishing and pearl diving region into an economically powerful, infrastructure rich nation and brought it at the forefront on the global map.
Born in 1918, His Highness, the President and the founder of the UAE was the youngest of the four sons of Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the then rulers of Abu Dhabi. His Highness came into power in the year 1966 and it is from then that the transformation, development and growth of Abu Dhabi and the entire region began to take shape.
His Highness came to the throne in 1966. Nevertheless, his passion for upliftment of the downtrodden, equitable distribution and thirst for development and growth were visible at much younger age. His leadership and bureaucratic qualities led him to become Al Ain’s representative at the age of just 28! During his tenure, Al Ain prospered to become the greenest city in Arab nations thanks to the revision of water ownership system pursued by His Highness. It was during this time that hospitals, schools and infrastructure were developed.
Despite minimal revenue from Al Ain, he personally funded the first modern school in Al Ain. He also convinced his friends and relatives to join him in his journey and thus began growth and development of Al Ain.
After coming to the throne in 1966, His Highness left no stone unturned to make Abu Dhabi and the UAE as we know today, a hub of growth and development. In 1968, His Highness took the initiative to unite and bring all the Emirates together.
His efforts were warmly received by Late His Highness Sheikh Rashed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the then Ruler of Dubai. The efforts of His Highness Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan paid off and in the year 1971, a federation that comprised of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah signed the pact and the Trucial States became UAE. Ras Al Khaimah too became a part of the UAE in 1972.
The vision, foresightedness and the ability to unite and bring about consensus with the Emirates, earned His Highness accolades and he became the President of the UAE.
Ever since the formation of the UAE, it scaled new heights in all areas- education, technology, infrastructure, social services, health, trade and finance. Today, the UAE is known for its phenomenal growth, open trade policy, political stability and as a market hub for the global business fraternity.
It is remarkable that while the Middle East experienced political crisis, the UAE remained unperturbed. Also, inspite of the fluctuations in the oil prices in the recent years, the UAE is able to sustain a steady GDP primarily because it spread its horizons from an oil nation to the manufacturing sector. Today, the contribution of the manufacturing sector stands at a bold 11% in 2015 and is slated to become 25% by 2025! That’s the strength and stature of our beloved leader, His Highness President Zayed, the Father of the Nation!