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1948-2022: Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s timeline

United Arab Emirates' President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan Thomson/Reuters
Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan changed the face of the United Arab Emirates

September 7 1948: Sheikh Khalifa was born in the inland oasis-city of Al Ain.

1966: He was appointed Ruler’s Representative in the Eastern Region of Abu Dhabi and Head of the Courts Department in Al Ain.

1969: Sheikh Khalifa was nominated Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and appointed Head of the Abu Dhabi Department of Defense, directing the Abu Dhabi Defense Force (ADDF) and later the UAE Armed Forces.

1971: He was appointed Prime Minister of Abu Dhabi and Minister of Defense and Finance.

1974: Sheikh Khalifa was appointed first Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council. In this role, he lead a wide-ranging development programme in the emirate, including the construction of housing, water supplies, and infrastructure, leading to the emergence of the modern Abu Dhabi that exists today.

1976: He was nominated Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces following the unification of the armed forces of the Emirates. He proceeded to develop the country’s defensive capability, establishing military training institutions and procuring the most advanced technology. 

He established the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority to manage the financial investments of the emirate and ensure a stable and prosperous future.

1979: Sheikh Khalifa decided to alleviate the burden on citizens of repaying commercial bank loans, leading to him establishing the Abu Dhabi Department of Social Services and Commercial Building in 1981. 

1991: He established the Private Loans Authority to further support citizens in building residential and commercial properties.

2004: He was elected President of the UAE, succeeding his father, founder of the UAE Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

2006: Sheikh Khalifa oversaw the restructuring of the UAE Cabinet, with Vice-President and Dubai Ruler HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum becoming Prime Minister.

2010: Burj Dubai was renamed Burj Khalifa in honour of Sheikh Khalifa.

2012: He launched Absher initiative to enhance the participation of UAE citizens in the labour market.

2014: The Emirates Polio Campaign was launched under the directives of President Sheikh Khalifa and Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, to provide help and humanitarian assistance to the people of Pakistan and support their development initiatives for a better future.

2015: Under the directions of Sheikh Khalifa, the UAE Cabinet approved the designation of 2015, as the Year of Innovation. 

2015-2022: Rarely seen due to ill health.

May 13 2022: Passed away aged 73.