The UAE will celebrate its 52nd UAE National Day on December 2. The Embassy of the UAE in Pretoria celebrated the event on November 2 at the Sheraton Hotel.

Dubbed the “Spirit of the Union,” this date commemorates the unification of all seven Emirates into one nation. UAE National Day is marked by dazzling firework displays, elaborate parades, and glittering ceremonies, a time when locals and expatriates come together in celebration.

On December 2, 1971, the rulers of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Ajman, Al-Ain, Sharjah, and Umm al-Quwain united as one country. Under the guidance of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the nation’s first president, the United Arab Emirates emerged. In February 1972, Ras Al Khaimah joined, becoming the seventh Emirate. Since then, UAE National Day has been celebrated annually with joyful festivities across the Gulf nation.

H.E. Mahash Saeed Alhameli warmly welcomed members of the Diplomatic Corps, Ministers, members of DIRCO, and distinguished guests to the occasion. H.E. Mr. Alhameli outlined UAE foreign policy and relations with South Africa.

A South African government representative delivered a speech. The UAE and South Africa share a proud legacy of historical partnership and bilateral relations. Formalized in 1994 during South Africa’s democratic transition, 2024 marks 30 years of this relationship coinciding with 30 years of South Africa’s democracy. The UAE has been invited as one of the six countries to become a full member of BRICS from July 1, 2024.

South Africa values the UAE’s continued investment in South Africa and the African continent. With bilateral trade in 2022 amounting to R109 billion, the UAE stands as South Africa’s largest trading partner in the Middle East. Both nations are committed to increasing investment and fostering opportunities to deepen their trade relations.

Guests enjoyed the evening, and two lucky winners each received an air ticket from the raffle draw.

Happy National Day, UAE! 🇦🇪

by Marion Kate