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Countries > United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates Flag

Languages   2 languages are spoken in United Arab Emirates. We have 422 products available for those languages.

Capital: Abu Dhabi
Population: 2,300,000
Click to Listen Play the National Anthem
United Arab Emirates Map


Location: Middle East, bordering the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf, between Oman and Saudi Arabia

Geographic coordinates: 24 00 N, 54 00 E

Map references: Middle East

total: 82,880 sq km
land: 82,880 sq km
water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Maine

Land boundaries:
total: 867 km
border countries: Oman 410 km, Saudi Arabia 457 km

Coastline: 1,318 km

Maritime claims:
contiguous zone: 24 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: desert; cooler in eastern mountains

Terrain: flat, barren coastal plain merging into rolling sand dunes of vast desert wasteland; mountains in east

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Persian Gulf 0 m
highest point: Jabal Yibir 1,527 m

Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas

Land use:
arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
permanent pastures: 2%
forests and woodland : 0%
other: 98% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land: 720 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards: frequent sand and dust storms

Environment - current issues: lack of natural freshwater resources being overcome by desalination plants; desertification; beach pollution from oil spills

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Climate Change, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified : Biodiversity, Law of the Sea

Geography - note: strategic location along southern approaches to Strait of Hormuz, a vital transit point for world crude oil


Population: 2,445,989
note: includes 1,576,472 non-nationals (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:
0-14 years : 27.7% (male 345,077; female 331,545
15-64 years:69.7% (male 1,069,443; female 635,275)
65 years and over: 2.6% (male 45,989; female 18,660) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate: 1.58% (2002 est.)

Birth rate: 18.3 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate: 3.9 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate: 1.41 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.68 male(s)/female
65 years and over : 2.46 male(s)/female
total population: 1.48 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 16.12 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population : 74.52 years
male: 72.06 years
female : 77.1 years (2002 est.)

Total fertility rate: 3.16 children born/woman (2002 est.)

noun: Emiri(s)
adjective: Emiri

Ethnic groups: Emiri 19%, other Arab and Iranian 23%, South Asian 50%, other expatriates (includes Westerners and East Asians) 8% (1982)
note: less than 20% are UAE citizens (1982)

Religions: Muslim 96% (Shi'a 16%), Christian, Hindu, and other 4%

Languages: Arabic (official), Persian, English, Hindi, Urdu

definition: age 15 and over can read and write but definition of literacy not available
total population: 79.2%
male : 78.9%
female: 79.8% (1995 est.)


Country name:
conventional long form : United Arab Emirates
conventional short form: none
local long form: Al Imarat al Arabiyah al Muttahidah
local short form: none
former: Trucial States
abbreviation : UAE

Data code: TC

Government type: federation with specified powers delegated to the UAE federal government and other powers reserved to member emirates

National capital: Abu Dhabi

Administrative divisions: 7 emirates (imarat, singular - imarah); Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi), 'Ajman, Al Fujayrah, Ash Shariqah (Sharjah), Dubayy (Dubai), Ra's al Khaymah, Umm al Qaywayn

Independence: 2 December 1971 (from UK)

National holiday: National Day, 2 December (1971)

Constitution: 2 December 1971 (made permanent in 1996)

Legal system: federal court system introduced in 1971; all emirates except Dubayy (Dubai) and Ras al Khaymah have joined the federal system; all emirates have secular and Islamic law for civil, criminal, and high courts

Suffrage: none

Executive branch:
chief of state:President ZAYID bin Sultan Al Nuhayyan (since 2 December 1971), ruler of Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi) (since 6 August 1966) and Vice President MAKTUM bin Rashid al-Maktum (since 8 October 1990), ruler of Dubayy (Dubai)
note: there is also a Federal Supreme Council (FSC) composed of the seven emirate rulers; the FSC is the highest constitutional authority in the UAE; establishes general policies and sanctions federal legislation; meets four times a year; Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi) and Dubayy (Dubai) rulers have effective veto power
head of government:Prime Minister MAKTUM bin Rashid al-Maktum (since 8 October 1990), ruler of Dubayy (Dubai); Deputy Prime Minister SULTAN bin Zayid Al Nuhayyan (since 20 November 1990)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections : president and vice president elected by the FSC (a group of seven electors) for five-year terms; election last held 2 December 2001 (next to be held NA 2006); prime minister and deputy prime minister appointed by the president
election results: ZAYID bin Sultan Al Nuhayyan reelected president; percent of FSC vote - NA%, but believed to be unanimous; MAKTUM bin Rashid al-Maktum elected vice president; percent of FSC vote - NA%, but believed to be unanimous

Legislative branch:unicameral Federal National Council or Majlis al-Ittihad al-Watani (40 seats; members appointed by the rulers of the constituent states to serve two-year terms)
elections: none
note: reviews legislation, but cannot change or veto

Judicial branch: Union Supreme Court, judges appointed by the president

Political parties and leaders: none

Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

International organization participation: ABEDA, AfDB, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, CCC, ESCWA, FAO, G-77, GCC, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ISO (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, OPEC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Asri Said Ahmad al-DHAHIRI
chancery: Suite 600, 3000 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 338-6500

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Marcelle M. WAHBA (since 4 Oct. 2001)
embassy: Al-Sudan Street, Abu Dhabi
mailing address: P. O. Box 4009, Abu Dhabi; American Embassy Abu Dhabi, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-6010 (pouch); note - work week is Saturday through Wednesday
telephone: [971] (2) 436691, 436692
FAX: [971] (2) 435441
consulate(s) general: Dubai

Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of green (top), white, and black with a thicker vertical red band on the hoist side


Economy - overview:The UAE has an open economy with a high per capita income and a sizable annual trade surplus. Its wealth is based on oil and gas output (about 33% of GDP), and the fortunes of the economy fluctuate with the prices of those commodities. Since 1973, the UAE has undergone a profound transformation from an impoverished region of small desert principalities to a modern state with a high standard of living. At present levels of production, oil and gas reserves should last for more than 100 years. The government has increased spending on job creation and infrastructure expansion and is opening up its utilities to greater private sector involvement.

GDP: purchasing power parity - $51 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:5.6% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $21,100 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 3%
services : 51% (2000 est.)

Inflation rate - consumer price index: 4.5% (2000 est.)

Labor force:
total: 1.6 million (2000 est.)
note: 73.9% of the population in the 15-64 age group is non-national (July 2002 est.)
by occupation: services 78%, industry 15%, agriculture 7% (2000 est.)

Unemployment rate: NA%

revenues: $20 billion
expenditures:$22 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)

Industries: petroleum, fishing, petrochemicals, construction materials, some boat building, handicrafts, pearling

Industrial production growth rate: 4% (2000)

Electricity - capacity: 5.29 million kW (1994)

Electricity - production: 38.7 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - consumption per capita: 35.991 billion kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products: dates, vegetables, watermelons; poultry, eggs, dairy products; fish

total value:$47.6 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)
commodities:crude oil 45%, natural gas, reexports, dried fish, dates
partners: Japan 30%, India 7%, Singapore 6%, South Korea 4%, Oman, Iran (1999)

total value:$28.6 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)
commodities: manufactured goods, machinery and transport equipment, food
partners :Japan 9%, UK 8%, US 8%, Italy 6%, Germany, South Korea (1999)

Debt - external: $12.6 billion (2001 est.)

Economic aid: $NA

Currency: 1 Emirian dirham(AED) = 100 fils

Exchange rates: Emirati dirhams per US dollar - central bank mid-point rate: 3.6725 (since 1997), 3.6710 (1995-96)

Fiscal year: calendar year


Telephones: 915,223 (1998)

Telephone system:modern system of microwave radio relay and coaxial cable; key centers are Abu Dhabi and Dubai
domestic: microwave radio relay and coaxial cable
international: satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Indian Ocean) and 1 Arabsat; submarine cables to Qatar, Bahrain, India, and Pakistan; tropospheric scatter to Bahrain; microwave radio relay to Saudi Arabia

Radio broadcast stations: AM 13, FM 7, shortwave 2 (1998)

Radios: 820,000 (1997)

Television broadcast stations: 15 (1997)

Televisions: 310,000 (1997)


Railways: 0 km

total: 4,835 km
paved: 4,835 km
unpaved :0 km (1998 est.)

Pipelines: crude oil 830 km; natural gas, including natural gas liquids, 870 km

Ports and harbors: 'Ajman, Al Fujayrah, Das Island, Khawr Fakkan, Mina' Jabal 'Ali, Mina' Khalid, Mina' Rashid, Mina' Saqr, Mina' Zayid, Umm al Qaywayn

Merchant marine:
total:56 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 833,401 GRT/1,251,015 DWT
ships by type: cargo 13, chemical tanker 3, container 7, liquefied gas 1, livestock carrier 1, petroleum tanker 25, roll on/roll off 6

Airports: 38 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 22
over 3,047 m :8
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m:3
914 to 1,523 m: 4
under 914 m: 4 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total :19
over 3,047 m :1
2,438 to 3,047 m:1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 9
under 914 m:5(2001)

Heliports: 2 (2001)


Military branches: Army, Navy, Air Force, paramilitary (includes Federal Police Force)

Military manpower - military age: 18 years of age

Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49 : 773,938 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:
males: 419,851 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males:25,482 (2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure: $1.6 billion (FY00)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 3.1% (FY00)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international:Oman signed boundary treaty with the UAE in 1999, but complete UAE-Oman boundary line is not expected until the end of 2002; undefined segments remain with Ra's al-Khaymah and Ash Shariqah (Sharjah) emirates, including the Musandam Peninsula, where an administrative boundary substitutes for an international boundary; because details of 1974 and 1977 treaties have not been made public, the exact location of the Saudi Arabia-UAE boundary is unknown and status is considered de facto; UAE seeks United Arab League and other international support against Iran's occupation of Greater Tunb Island (called Tunb al Kubra in Arabic by UAE and Jazireh-ye Tonb-e Bozorg in Persian by Iran) and Lesser Tunb Island (called Tunb as Sughra in Arabic by UAE and Jazireh-ye Tonb-e Kuchek in Persian by Iran) and attempts to occupy completely a jointly administered island in the Persian Gulf (called Abu Musa in Arabic by UAE and Jazireh-ye Abu Musa in Persian by Iran)

Illicit drugs: The UAE is a drug transshipment point for traffickers given its proximity to southwest Asian drug producing countries; the UAE's position as a major financial center makes it vulnerable to money laundering; anti-money-laundering legislation was signed into law by the president on 25 January 2002

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