Dubai (in Arabic: دبيّ, Dubeye) is one of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It is located south of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula. The Dubai Municipality is sometimes called Dubai state to distinguish it from the emirate. Written accounts document the existence of the city for at least 150 years prior to the formation of the UAE.
Dubai shares legal, political, military and economic functions with the other emirates within a federal framework, although each emirate has jurisdiction over some functions such as civic law enforcement and provision and upkeep of local facilities. Dubai has the largest population and is the second-largest emirate by area, after Abu Dhabi. Dubai and Abu Dhabi are the only two emirates to possess veto power over critical matters of national importance in the country’s legislature. Dubai has been ruled by the Al Maktoum dynasty since 1833. Its current ruler, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is also the Prime Minister and Vice-President of the UAE.
The emirate’s main revenues are from tourism, property and financial services. Although Dubai’s economy was originally built on the oil industry, revenues from petroleum and natural gas currently contribute less than 6% (2006) of the emirate’s US$ 80 billion economy (2009). Property and construction contributed 22.6% to the economy in 2005, before the current large-scale construction boom.
Dubai has attracted world attention through many innovative large construction projects and sports events. This increased attention, coinciding with its emergence as a global city and business hub, has highlighted labour and human rights issues concerning its largely South Asian workforce. Established in 2004, the Dubai International Finance Centre was intended as a landmark project to turn Dubai into a major international hub for banks and finance, rivalling New York, London, and Hong Kong.