Dubai's downturn has prompted changes in the city's power structure, with high-level firings that could be accelerated by last week's debt emergency. Earlier this month the emirate removed Dr. Omar Bin Sulaiman, the head of Dubai International Financial Center and a face of Dubai to investors around the world.
Last week's announcement frees Dubai's hands in making more changes, restructing its state-linked businesses and their liabilities. The changes have come suddenly and without explanation, fueling critics' concerns that Dubai has not been fully honest about the extent of its problems and how it has handled them.
The result has has been a heightened loss of confidence in Dubai's economy. Woertz of the Gulf Research Center says the debt crisis has been "a litmus test for Dubai's credibility," a test Dubai now risks of failing.