United Arab Emirates Politics

United Arab Emirates Politics, Population and Geography

General information: Concluding in the XIX century. a series of treaties with Great Britain, the principalities of Treaty Oman allowed her to completely control all their defense and foreign policy. In 1971, six of these principalities – Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Al Fujairah, Sharjah, Dubai and Umm al-Kai-Wine – formed the United Arab Emirates. In 1972, the Principality of Ras ep Khaimah joined them. GDP per capita in the UAE is not much lower than that in Western European countries. The abundance of oil resources and moderate foreign policy allow the UAE to play an important role in the region.


Location: Middle East, coast of the Persian and Gulf of Oman between Oman and Saudi Arabia.
Geographical coordinates: 24° 00′ N. latitude, 54° 00′ E
Reference map: Middle East.
Area: total: 82,880 km2; land surface area: 82,880 km2; water surface area: 0 km2
Comparative area: slightly smaller than Maine.
Land borders: total: 867 km; with neighboring states: with Oman 410 km, with Saudi Arabia 457 km.
Coastline: 1,318 km.
Maritime claims: neutral waters: 24 nautical miles; continental shelf: 200 nautical miles or to the outer limits of the continent; lowest point: Persian Gulf – 0 m; highest point: Mount Jabal-Yibir – 1,527 m.
Maximum and minimum heights:
Natural resources: oil, natural gas.
Land use: arable land: 0%; cultivated land: 0%; pastures: 2%; forests and plantations: 0%; others: 98% (1993 est.).
Irrigated land: 50 km2 (1993 est.).
Natural Hazards: Frequent sand and dust storms.
Current environmental issues: lack of reserves of natural drinking water, replenished with the help of desalination plants; desertification; oil pollution of beaches (in case of tanker accidents).
International environmental agreements: member: Biodiversity, Climate change, Desertification, Endangered species, Hazardous waste, Marine pollution, Ozone layer protection; signed but not ratified: Law of the Sea.
Note to the Geography section: strategically important location along the southern approaches to the Strait of Hormuz, an important transit point for world oil transportation.


Population: 2,407,460; note: including 1,576,472 foreign citizens (July 2001 est.).
Age structure: under 14: 28.86% (male 354,298; female 340,498); 15 to 64 years old: 68.74% (male 1,047,839; female 607,020); over 65: 2.4% (male 40,626; female 17,179) (2001 est.).
Population growth: 1.59% (2001 est.).
Birth rate: 18.11 newborns / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Mortality: 3.79 deaths / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Migration: 1.61 people / 1000 people (2001 est.).
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male/female; under 15: 1.04 male/female; 15 to 64 years old: 1.73 male/female; over 65: 2.36 male/female; for the general population: 1.5 male/female. (2001 est.).
Child mortality: 16.68 deaths/1000 newborns (2001 est.).
Life expectancy: for the general population: 74.29 years; men: 71.84 years; women: 76.86 years (2001 est.).
General birth rate: 3.23 children/wives. (2001 est.).
Proportion of adults infected with HIV: 0.18% (1999 est.).
Number of people infected with HIV: no data.
Mortality due to AIDS: no data available.
Nationality: noun: Emirati; adjective: Emirati.
Ethnic groups: Emiratis – 19%, other Arabs and Iranians – 23%, South Asians – 50%, other expatriates (including those from the West and East Asia) – 8% (1982); note: less than 20% of the population are UAE citizens (1982).
Believers: Muslims 96% (of which 16% are Shiites); Christians, Hindus, etc. 4%.
Language(s): Arabic (official), Persian, English, Hindi, Urdu.
Literacy: definition: persons aged 15 and over who can read and write; for the general population: 79.2%; men: 78.9%; women: 79.8% (1995 est.).


conventional long form: United Arab Emirates;
Common short form: none; local long form: Al Imarat al Arabiyah al Muttahidah; local short form: absent; former: Treaty Oman; abbreviation: UAE.
State structure: a federal state in which part of the powers are transferred to the federal government of the UAE, and other powers are retained by the emirates. See politicsezine.com to know more about United Arab Emirates Political System.
Capital: Abu Dhabi.
Administrative division: 7 emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Qaiwain, Sharjah, Al Fujairah.
Independence: from December 2, 1971 (until 1971 – protectorate of Great Britain).
National holiday: Independence Day, 2 December (since 1971).
Constitution: adopted 2 December 1971 (became permanent in 1996)
Legal system: Federal court system introduced in 1971; all emirates, with the exception of Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah, joined the Federal system; all emirates have their own secular and Islamic laws, which govern civil, criminal and supreme courts.
Suffrage: no.
chief of state: President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan (since 2 December 1971), Emir of Abu Dhabi (since 6 August 1966) Vice President Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum (since 8 October 1990), Emir of Dubai;
head of the government: Prime Minister MAKTOUM bin Rashid Al Maktoum (since 8 October 1990), Emir of Dubai; Deputy Prime Minister SULTAN bin Zayed Al-Nahyan (since 20 November 1990);
Government: a council of ministers appointed by the president; note: there is also a Federal Supreme Council, consisting of the seven rulers of the emirates; this Council is the supreme body of state power in the UAE, approves general policy and authorizes federal laws; the rulers of Abu Dhabi and Dubai have de facto veto power; the council meets four times a year; elections: the president and vice president are elected by the Federal Supreme Council (a group of seven voters) for a five-year term; elections last held in October 1996 (next to be held in October 2001); the prime minister and his deputy are appointed by the president; election results: ZAYYID bin Sultan Al Nahyan re-elected President; percentage of votes in the Federal Supreme Council was not made public, but it is highly likely that the vote was unanimous. MAKTOUM bin Rashid Al Maktoum elected Vice President; the percentage of votes in the Federal Supreme Council was not made public, but it is very likely that the will was unanimous.
Legislative branch: unicameral Federal National Council (Majlis al-lttihad al-Watani) – 40 members appointed by the rulers of all principalities in the UAE for a two-year term; elections: no; note: the council can consider laws, but can neither change nor veto them.
Judiciary: Joint Supreme Court, judges appointed by the president.
Political parties and leaders: no.
Political pressure groups and their leaders: no data available.
Participation in international organizations: ABEDA, 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, ITU, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, OPCW, OPEC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO.
US Diplomatic Mission: Head of Mission: Ambassador Asri Said Ahmad al-DHAHIRI; office: Suite 700, 1255 22nd Street NW, Washington, DC 20037; phone: [1] (202) 955-7999.
US Diplomatic Mission: Chief of Mission: Ambassador Theodore H. KATTOUF; embassy: Al-Sudan Street, Abu Dhabi; mailing address: R. O. Box 4009, Abu Dhabi; American Embassy Abu Dhabi, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-6010 (pouch); note – working week from Saturday to Wednesday; phone: [971] (2) 4436691; fax: [971] (2) 4435441; consulates general: Dubai.
Flag Description: Three equal horizontal stripes of green (top), white and black, with a wider vertical red stripe near the hoist.

United Arab Emirates Politics