The "Ain Dubai" or Dubai Eye, a 853 feet (260 meter) ferris wheel is under construction, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Monday, Sept. 18, 2017. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)
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Ever since the first gleaming towers sprang out of the desert, Dubai has gotten used to rapid change.Business unease was already apparent in April, when Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al-Maktoum convened a meeting with more than 100 executives in his palace overlooking the Gulf.A fix for what's ailing Dubai may be beyond the powers of its ruler.Sheikh Mohammad and his predecessors built a fishing village into a hub for finance, trade and tourism in the region but now that region is changing, perhaps for good.Dubai prospered as a kind of Switzerland in the Gulf, a place to do business walled off from the often violent rivalries of the Middle East, says Jim Krane, author of the 2009 book "City of Gold: Dubai and the Dream of Capitalism.''Dubai also faces consequences of its own success.Dubai remains pre-eminent in that role.It was the cost of living that persuaded Donovan Schram, a 38-year-old bond trader, to call time on his eight years in Dubai a few months ago.One thing the government isn't doing is reining in the builders.Dubai will host the World Expo fair in 2020 .
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