Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World and Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, said Dubai has surprised the world with exceptional audacity, efficiency and creativity with the extraordinary New Year’s Eve celebrations.
Bin Sulayem said that many world security and civil defence experts speculated about the possible annulment of one of the world’s best NYE fireworks due to the fire that broke out at the Address Downtown hotel just a few hours before the celebrations.
“But their speculations were proven wrong when Dubai dazzled everyone twice in less than three hours with civil defence, ambulance services and policemen tackling the blaze promptly and professionally in an area where hundreds of thousands of people flock in every day,” he said.
He praised the Dubai authorities for bringing the flames under control and successfully evacuating all guests of the hotel in record time and with no fatalities - such quick and efficient action never seen anywhere in the world.
“Those evacuated were comforted and provided alternative hotel rooms. The excellent management of this emergency incident and the transparent manner in which it was handled confirms the efficiency of Dubai in dealing with crises,” he said.
“Dubai amazed the entire world by bravely declaring that New Year's Eve celebrations would continue as scheduled. The fire that erupted at the Address Downtown hotel failed to dampen the revellers’ excitement as a spectacular fireworks display went off at the nearby Burj Khalifa and other city landmarks of Dubai and lasted for over half an hour.
"The wise leadership of the emirate, while prioritizing the safety of the people on site, at the same time wouldn’t prevent such massive crowd of UAE residents and visitors and millions of viewers around the world from relishing the colourful celebrations they were promised,” he added.
Bin Sulayem said that by taking the sensible decision of staging – and saving – what truly turned to be one of the best NYE celebrations the world has ever seen, Dubai has manifested enormous capability and determination to take on challenges and defeat them, which makes Dubai worthy of our trust and the trust of all its admirers around the world. “Dubai has delivered unforgettable lessons of creativity, efficiency, and good planning and crisis management,” he added.