Prominent business leaders, who have been integral to the UAE’s phenomenal success story, and contributed to its spectacular progress and prosperity over 45 years, joined the National Day celebrations by reaffirming their loyalty and solidarity with the nation that had given them exciting opportunities to realize their success dreams.

As the UAE marks its 45th anniversary, prominent members of the business community recall their long association with the country that helped shape up their destinies.

They also share their thoughts and aspirations about its future as they pay rich tributes to the visionary and pragmatic leadership who had made it all happen.

They are equally unanimous with their profound opinion that the UAE today sets an exemplary standard as the leading destination for sustainable economic growth and the ideal investment hub on a regional and global scale.

Here are some excerpts:

Dr Ahmed Aljanahi, managing director of Noor Takaful and deputy group CEO of Noor Investment Group: Within less than half a century, the UAE has transformed dramatically to assume the present status as a global benchmark. Backed by visionary leadership, and strong support from the workforce of this great nation, the country is well-positioned to continue pioneering towards a brighter future.

Jamal Al Jassmi, general manager of Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies: The UAE National Day is a time when the people of our great nation come together to celebrate the strides we have accomplished as a single entity. In the past 44 years, the UAE has achieved milestones across a range of sectors and prospers within technological, urban and economic platforms.

Saif Mohamed Al Hajeri, CEO of Tawazun: We extend our gratitude and allegiances to our leadership, under whose vision, guidance and trust, we continue our efforts to contribute to the development of our country. We will always be loyal to this generous nation and always ready to make the most precious sacrifices to protect its glorious sovereignty.

Yusuffali M.A., managing director of Emke Lulu Group: It is, indeed, a proud moment not only for the citizens of the UAE but for all residents here who have always considered this great country as their second home… the 45th UAE national day is a time for all of us to renew our trust and loyalty towards this great nation and do our bit for the further development of this country.

Dr B.R. Shetty, managing director of Emke Lulu Group: The UAE is one of the fast-growing economies, thanks to the great vision and strong foundation laid by its visionary leaders. Their farsightedness helped propel the national economy and create a sustainable future… The government and citizens have welcomed the international communities with open hearts, making them feel valued.

Dr Ram Buxani, chairman of ITL-Cosmos Group: The national day of any country is a true occasion to unite all the people on one platform and the enthusiasm which we see in the UAE is indeed inspiring. It is the leadership which keeps beads in one thread. It is this common understanding among nationals and expats, who are treated with respect and tolerance that the UAE continues to grow.

Thumbay Moideen, founder president of Thumbay Group: The UAE’s remarkable progress is a reflection of the strong foundations established by the visionary rulers… I would also like to commend the unique spirit of multiculturalism that stands out as a model of inclusive development.

Faizal E. Kottikollon, founder and chairman of KEF Holdings: The UAE is home to a large number of people who have benefited from the nation’s vision of innovation and entrepreneurship… the UAE presents a fertile environment for growth and success.

Mohan Valrani, senior vice-chairman of Al Shirawi Group: I am always proud and happy to be a part of this country. It is such a special day; it is our National Day. Let us celebrate this day with our head held high. I feel honored to be a resident of this nation.

Siddharth Balachandran, executive chairman of Buimerc Corporation: The great nation of UAE is the undoubted cradle of unstoppable and holistic development. Today, on the happy occasion of the 45th National Day, my heartfelt salutations to the visionary rulers, the dynamic citizens and to each and every resident of this great country.

Sudhir Kumar Shetty, president of UAE Exchange: 45 years of a great vision coming to life. 45 years of sustained progress. 45 years of the UAE! This nation has been a brilliant example of great vision being pursued well to build a sustained economy that offers great opportunities to people from all over the world.

Neeraj Agrawal, executive director of Crescent Enterprises and group CFO of Crescent Group: The UAE has been constantly pushing the boundaries of excellence, growth and entrepreneurial pursuit over 45 years. The top-notch infrastructure-and private sector-conducive policies provide numerous opportunities for enterprises… even achieve international success.

Kamal Vachani, group director of Al Maya Group: The UAE has emerged as one of the most developed economies and a world-class place to live and we are very fortunate to be part of one of the fastest-growing countries in the world.

Neeraj Vohra, CEO of Unikai Foods: The UAE National Day is an occasion to celebrate the spirit of this great nation and its rich heritage. It is a reminder of all the great achievements that fill our hearts with pride.

Carla Koffel, executive director of the Pearl Initiative: The UAE government’s dedication to building a knowledge-based economy and cultivating an enabling regulatory framework will help the UAE navigate the complex changes in today’s economic landscape.