The French intelligence website, Intelligenceonline, highlighted the hidden domination struggle between Abu Dhabi and Dubai, especially in light of the succession of generations in power in the two Emirates.
The website said that Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is cautiously preparing to take over his father’s duties in Dubai, but one of his primary goals is to reduce Abu Dhabi’s influence and the dominance of its rulers over the country’s affairs.
The site considered Hamdan’s recent announcement of a $12 million aid plan for “people of determination” as a sign of the steps currently underway regarding the succession of the leader of the emirate, who is the head of its Executive Council.
According to the French website, Hamdan, 39, is currently adopting a political agenda that indicates he would take the helm of his father, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, 73, the Emir of Dubai and Prime Minister of the Emirates.
Today, Hamdan assumes greater responsibilities within Dubai’s economic circles, with a vision of making the emirate’s economy more competitive and maintaining its strong position in the face of Emirati sovereign power, which Abu Dhabi increasingly dominates.
According to the French website, Hamdan’s influence has been growing for a long time, with rumours circulating of his imminent appointment as the de facto ruler of Dubai, who will remain the official ruler of the emirate nonetheless.
The site considered that this step would be proactive to prevent his natural successor from further eroding Dubai’s influence within the Emirates, especially once Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan was appointed as his crown prince.
Hamdan was promoted to Crown Prince of Dubai in February 2008, at the age of 27, while serving as Chairman of the Emirate’s Executive Council since September 2006.
Through this position, he supervises all government entities of the emirate, starting with the Dubai Police and Dubai Airports and ending with the Dubai Finance Department.
From this standpoint, Hamdan draws the financial roadmap for the Emirate of Dubai in the long term. Dubai does not have as many oil reserves as Abu Dhabi, as Dubai’s reserves represent less than 5% of the country’s GDP.
Born in 1982, Khalid bin Mohammed Al Nahyan is expected to become the next crown prince of Abu Dhabi, silently overseeing the emirate’s internal security. But Hamdan competes with him and prefers to present the image of the future ruler closest to the people.