(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) "We always seek to be number one. In the UAE and Dubai, we are number one in terms of investment, security, quality of stable life, economic and social progress and infrastructure," said His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
He was speaking at a dinner banquet hosted by the Dubai government at the Armani Restaurant in Burj Khalifa on Monday night in honour of 500 Global Forbes CEOs who are taking part in the Forbes Global CEO Conference, held for the first time in the Middle East.
"I know that you also want to be number one and that is why you are holding your conference in Dubai," said Shaikh Mohammed.
The banquet was attended by Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs, Reem Ibrahim Al Hashimi, Minister of State, and a number of senior officials.
Shaikh Mohammed welcomed Global Forbes CEOs and expressed his delight at meeting this elite group of world businessmen in the UAE, specifically in Dubai. He wished them success in their conference and that they would reach the desired goals of their companies that selected Dubai to host such a major conference for the first time.
Shaikh Mohammed spoke about the success story of the UAE and Dubai. He said the UAE has managed to ride out the global financial crisis and its economy is well on the path to recovery. Shaikh Mohammed recalled the days when the Jebel Ali Port was built, thanks to the vision of the late Shaikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum.
He also spoke about the establishment of Emirates airline in 1985 that started with two small aircraft, later expanding into a large fleet serving over 160 destinations. Shaikh Mohammed said during the first and second Gulf wars, most of the world's air and shipping lines avoided Dubai due to insurance risks.
"I made a decisive decision of guaranteeing insurance against any risks to the airlines and shipping lines and soon after, our airports and seaports became vibrant again," he said.