ABU DHABI // A No 1 limited edition licence plate commemorating Abu Dhabi Government’s Golden Jubilee was sold to an Emirati for Dh31 million on Saturday at Emirates Palace hotel.

The winning bidder for the coveted plate, Abdullah Al Mahri, 32, said he bought it in honour of the country’s Rulers, who worked tirelessly to make the UAE No 1 in the world.

“I’m very proud to get No 1, especially for this golden jubilee, 50 years of the Abu Dhabi Government. I’m very proud and I’m very happy,” Mr Al Mahri said.

Fifty plates featured an exclusive category “50” in the top left of each plate to commemorate the Government’s jubilee.

Hosted by Emirates Auction in cooperation with Abu Dhabi Police, organisers hoped the auction would break the world record for the world’s most expensive plate.

That was set in the capital in 2008 when a No 1 plate was sold for Dh52.5m. The sale was still a success, Emirates Auction chairman Abdullah Al Mannai said of the Dh99 million raised at the auction.

“We received more than I expected,” said Mr Al Mannai. “We exceeded our numbers, the audience was bigger. Every country has a series of numbers and this is the first time there was a series released just for a limited number in the UAE.”

Other numbers to fetch high winning bids included plate No 7, which sold for Dh13.4m to a young Emirati bidding in proxy for a buyer who wanted to celebrate the seven emirates – and because it is a lucky number. More info

By   www.thenational.ae