Early records of Dubai describe it as a fishing community, in particular of pearl fishers. In 1833, the Al Maktoum dynasty from neighbouring Abu Dhabi took over the town of Dubai. In the following years, there was a degree of conflict between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
In 1835, the seven Trucial States of the Persian Gulf signed a maritime truce with Great Britain, giving the United Kingdom control of their defence and foreign affairs and a 'perpetual maritime truce' followed in 1853.
Dubai's leaders focussed on commerce as a means for economic growth, attracting many foreign traders and businessmen to it's ports. Many of these early expatriates remained in Dubai, the first of many foreigners to work and settle in the emirate.
In 1966, Dubai joined Qatar in the creation of a new monetary unit, the riyal. Following the departure of the British from the Persian Gulf in 1971, Dubai joined with five other emirates (Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Fujairah, Sharjah and Umm al-Qaiwa) to form the United Arab Emirates. They were joined the following year by the seventh emirate, Ras Al Khaimah. In 1973, the UAE adopted the dirham as it's common monetary unit.
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