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Commemorative volume to mark the sixtieth anniversary of the Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah His Highness Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi


<p>HH Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al QasimiRuler of Ras Al Khaimah and Member of the Supreme Council of the UAE, on completing 60 Golden Years of Rule, becoming the 2nd longest reigning Ruler in the world.1</p> <p>A Tribute to</p> <p>The Management, Employees, and Registered Companies of RAK Free Trade Zone</p> <p>Congratulate</p> <p>His Highness Sheikh Saqr Bin Mohammed Al QassimiMember of the Supreme Council - Ruler of Ras Al Khaimahand</p> <p>His Highness Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al QassimiCrown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah</p> <p>on 60 years as Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah</p> <p>A World-Class Business Hub</p> <p>ADv nt ADvAntAgesGERMANY USA TURKEY UNITED ARAB EMIRATES INDIA CHINA</p> <p>100% Foreign Ownership Tax-Free Environment Transparent LawsAdvantages</p> <p>100% Capital and Profit Repatriation</p> <p>RAK Free Trade Zone Global NetworkProducts</p> <p>Flexi Facilities</p> <p>Executive Offices</p> <p>International Company</p> <p>Warehouses</p> <p>Land for Development</p> <p>Free Zone</p> <p>RAK Free Trade Zone offers a range of unique business features that include: Promotion and Liaison Offices in the UAE, India, Turkey, Germany, USA and China; Offshore and Onshore options for companies; minimal administrative procedures. At RAK Free Trade Zone, investors benefit from 100% foreign ownership, a tax-free environment, transparent laws, as well as 100% capital and profit repatriation. RAK FTZ is one of the fastest growing free trade zones in the region, with more than 5,000 companies from 106 countries around the globe.</p> <p>Ras Al Khaimah Free Trade Zone Authority - Government of Ras Al KhaimahTelephone +971 7 2077117 Email Website</p> <p>Ras Al Khaimah Free Trade Zone</p> <p>CreditsPublisher &amp; Managing Director Sankarnarayanan Managing Editor K Raveendran Director Finance Anandi Ramachandran General Manager ( Sales and Marketing) Radhika Natu Product Manager Vijay Ganga Editor Manju Ramanan Contributing Editor Linda Benbow Desk Editor Vanit Sethi Creative Director Harikumar PB Design Ujwala Ranade Photographs Ali Omar, Sagar Ibrahim Hameed Accounts Biju Vargese Production Supervisor Saleem KV Loft Office 2, G 01, Dubai Media City P.O. Box 500595, Dubai, UAE. Website: Email: India: Anand Vardhan, DII/89, Pandara Road, New Delhi 110003. Bahrain: Suniz Publication W.L.L., P.O.Box. 2114, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain. Tel: 00973 17276682. Printing: Asiatic Printing Press L.L.C., PB 3522, Ajman, UAE. Tel: 06 743 4221. Fax: 06 743 4223., Email: Sterling Publications would like to thank the following people for their sincere support in the making of The Golden Tribute Mr Saeed Lahha Al Shehhi Mr Ali Omar Ms Sheeba Nair Mr KR Rajeev The Juma Al Majid Centre for Culture and Heritage A TRIBUTE SERIES</p> <p>6</p> <p>The Department of Economic Development in Ras Al Khaimahwould like to extend its congratulations to His Highness Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi Member of Supreme Council and Ruler of Ras Al</p> <p>Years of Philanthropy</p> <p>60</p> <p>On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of his accession</p> <p>Golden Rule</p> <p>A Living LegendThe longest reigning ruler in the Middle East, HH Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi has completed 60 years of rule and is the pride of the UAE</p> <p>By Manju Ramanan</p> <p>Compassion, Benevolence and SimplicityA fearless mind ignited with the power of knowledge, a benevolent heart compassionate to the rich and the poor, a generous spirit that worked tirelessly for the welfare of all his people, a visionary leader who is revered fondly as a father by all, Sheikh Saqr has touched many generations by the virtue of his modesty, simplicity and selflessness. When he met tribal leaders, he was one of them and even spoke their dialects. He has never been a figure of totalitarian authority. Extremely approachable, he speaks less, listens more, and is known for his kindness. A peoples ruler, Sheikh Saqr is truly enthroned in the hearts of the people of Ras Al Khaimah. He is largely respected for his simplicity and modesty, and as you read about him in various parts of the book, impressions of his benevolence shine through. Well respected and loved by all, his legacy continues through his illustrious son HH Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Crown</p> <p>8</p> <p>HH Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah</p> <p>With the late HH Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Vice President of the UAE and the Ruler of Dubai</p> <p>With the late HH Sheikh Rashid bin Ahmed Al Mulla, Ruler of Umm Al Quwain</p> <p>The late HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi was a close friend</p> <p>In 1972, Ras Al Khaimah joined the federation of the UAE</p> <p>9</p> <p>With HH Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi, Ruler of Ajman, and HH Sheikh Zayed</p> <p>With HH Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, the Ruler of Fujairah</p> <p>10</p> <p>HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi with HH Sheikh Saqr and HH Sheikh Saud</p> <p>Prince and Deputy Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah. The book is a tribute to the grand Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah and one of the founding fathers of the UAE, who shared several important moments with the countrys legendary leaders like the late HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi, and the late HH Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Perhaps an incident that happened at his majlis in the Ras Al Khaimah desert talks best about his personality. Unnoticed to the motley crowd assembled there, a venomous scorpion had crept into the tent. Its stealth, however, did not quite escape Sheikh Saqrs sharp eye. To contain the mayhem that might have ensued, he quietly stepped on it and held it under his foot, till the entire proceedings of the day got over.</p> <p>Unifying the EmirateSheikh Saqr is the longest reigning Ruler in the Middle East (running his 61st year) and second longest reigning Ruler in the world, next only to the King of Thailand, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, followed by Queen Elizabeth of England. However, his greatness does not merely lie in the number of years of rule, but in his benevolent reign that is completely dedicated to the people of his emirate. For a man who was just 23 years old when he came to power in 1948, the young and raring to go Sheikh Saqr created an emirate out of several tribes scattered over its regions, by engaging inSheikh Saqr unified the scattered tribes spread over various regions of Ras Al Khaimah and created the emirate</p> <p>11</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr was just 23 years old when he came to power</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr visited several countries. Seen here with various delegates</p> <p>12</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr with the royal entourage</p> <p>counsel with them, solving their problems and understanding their woes. Eye-witnesses recall him quieten two heavily armed warring tribes with the power of his advice and judgement. However, the tougher side of Sheikh Saqr is well balanced with a soft, gentler side. Fondly called Baba Saqr, an adage he thrives on, he shares a parent-child, teacher-student relationship with his people. Like a parent, he admonishes them so that they dont falter. At the same time, he has great patience with them. He was always angry with them, not angry at them. He was enraged if he felt they were not striving hard enough to achieve their goal.</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr is known to be a man of few words</p> <p>Education for AllEducation has been Sheikh Saqrs biggest achievement, not only for Ras Al Khaimah, but for the entire UAE. Several people interviewed for the book admit that their professional success today is because of Sheikh Saqrs timely advice and admonishment when required. He corrected me like a father would cor-</p> <p>13</p> <p>Tiny tots pose with Sheikh Saqr</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr receiving children from Europe</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr visiting a school and interacting with students</p> <p>Children bring a great sense of joy to the Ruler</p> <p>14</p> <p>rect his child, is a common refrain heard from several people, who spoke about his thrust on education. Way back in the 1950s, Sheikh Saqr insisted on educating all his people and there were schools right from Al Minai, to Masafi, from Sham to Bin Daher, Aden and Al Nakheel. His own bodyguards, who were known as the school police, got children to attend school and reported on</p> <p>parents hesitant to enrol their children in schools. He would tell the parents that if they desisted from sending their children to school, they would have to face imprisonment, and for children, a story of the dark dungeon in the palace was enough to set them running to school. Today, a large section of people from Ras Al Khaimah are em-</p> <p>The royal signature</p> <p>Aboard a British vessel</p> <p>ployed in various top positions in the federal government, and are counted among the most educated people in the UAE. This is because Sheikh Saqr made sure that when the federation was formed, the people in the mountains and villages of his emirate got the same educational facilities as those in the cities.</p> <p>Foresight for Free ZonesA practical foresighted ruler, Sheikh Saqr knew that oil was not his emirates strong point and identified its strengths. He saw that its natural resources, mountains, ports and fertile soil would be suited for certain kinds of industries only and that would not be enough. He envisioned that people would come from</p> <p>the world over to RAK, establish industries, settle there, create employment for his people, and profit in business as well. Today, Ras Al Khaimah has three free trade zones -two represented by RAKIA (Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority at Al Hamra and Al Ghail) and one RAKFTZ (RAK Free Trade Zone at Al Nakheel), both of which are instrumental for getting investment into the emirate. One of RAKs success stories is RAK Ceramics, the worlds largest manufacturer of ceramic tiles, that has entered into management curricula as a success story. Further, the emirate has been voted as the Middle Easts Most Attractive Investment Destination. All fulfilling Sheikh Saqrs vision about his emirate.</p> <p>15</p> <p>Sheik Saqr with his brother Sheikh Kayed bin Mohammed Al Qasimi (seated third from left)</p> <p>But much before the free zone era, Sheikh Saqr had already established the first agricultural research station in the UAE, the regions first pharmaceutical company, Julphar, and the Union Cement industry, after it was discovered that the Hajjar Mountains had rich deposits of limestone. Also, several industries in RAK are located near its ports, and the emirates several waterways allow freight to be shipped to different parts of the world, which became a natural advantage to its industry. Sheikh Saqr developed several ports that include Saqr Port and RAK Port.</p> <p>brought into the city using donkeys and distributed to people assembled near the area adjacent to the Bruce Lee Building. Security has been prime for Sheikh Saqr, who is strict with offenders yet retained a softer side to them. People recall him advising errant drivers to drive carefully. Once, a young boy was caught speeding and brought to the police station and detained overnight. But when his distraught mother appealed to Sheikh Saqr, the kind-hearted Ruler summoned the youth and handed him over to her, with a good word of advice.</p> <p>My People, My FamilyProviding for a diverse population that includes all nationalities is a huge responsibility. It means giving the people the comfort of a home where they can work and live a good quality of life, providing them security as well as superior infrastructural facilities - good roads, medical facilities, schools and hospitals. In all these aspects Sheikh Saqr never faltered. Before water came to the emirate, people recall how fresh water from the mountains was</p> <p>Pioneering Legal ReformSheikh Saqrs entourage of legal advisors and consultants have been active in bringing to RAK pioneering progressive policies. The judicial court at RAK is independent of the state. As far as decrees and laws are concerned, RAK has had some pioneering laws in the UAE it was the first emirate to have laws for vehicle insurance or for trademark registrations all due to the progressive vision of Sheikh Saqr.</p> <p>16</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr with the Imam of Mecca</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr with various tribal leaders</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr with UAE envoys from various countries</p> <p>17</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr meets former British PM Margaret Thatcher</p> <p>Receiving foreign dignitaries and delegations</p> <p>18</p> <p>HH Sheikh Saqr with HH Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Ruler of Qatar</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr with the Omani ambassador to the UAE</p> <p>Receiving a British naval officer</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr and Sheikh Faisal with the Anglican Bishop</p> <p>Living HealthyHealth is another sector that has received patronage from Sheikh Saqr. A disciplinarian himself, he walks for an hour every day and is an early riser. People remember him touring the emirate in the wee hours of the morning, unaccompanied by bodyguards,</p> <p>observing how his people lived and worked. A policeman recalls how, after an accident, when he was admitted to the hospital, he opened his eyes and saw Sheikh Saqr standing near his bed. That is the level of personal interest he took in his people. No wonder then, Ras Al Khaimah has government as well as private</p> <p>19</p> <p>hospitals in the same vicinity for people from all walks of life. So, a Saqr Hospital that operates under the Federal Ministry of Health is located next to the RAK Hospital, a collaboration between the Government of RAK and the ETA group. In fact, Ras Al Khaimah is actively promoting medical tourism since it is aptly located amidst mountains, valleys, deserts and the sea.</p> <p>Switzerland-like RAKSheikh Saqr built the first hotel of the emirate, the Ras Al Khaimah Hotel, over 40 years ago. In fact, several current patrons of the hotel associate their childhood vacations with the hotel. The hotel had the regions first gaming zone too. The Bin Majid Resort came next, followed by several others like The Hilton, New Hilton Beach Club, Al Hamra Hotel, The Cove - Rotana, Acacia Hotels et al, catering to different segments of the tourist population. It is known that Sheikh Saqr, quite impressed by Switzerland, wants to develop RAK on the same lines with world class hospitality and infrastructure.</p> <p>Sheikh Saqr cuts a cake on the UAE National Day</p> <p>Culture ConfidentWithout the past, there is no future, and Sheikh Saqr has been keen on preserving RAKs rich past that dates back several centuries when it was called Julphar. Ras Al Khaimah has several museums that include the National Museum and several personal museums as well. One of the museums is dedicated to the life of seafarer Ahmed bin Majid who hailed from Julphar - the old name of Ras Al Khaimah.Sheikh Saqr and Sheikh Saud at an art exhibition</p> <p>20</p> <p>Over the last 33 years UCC contributed to...</p>