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 The Trucial States of the Persian Gulf coast granted the UK

control of their defense and foreign affairs in 19th century
treaties. In 1971, six of these states - Abu Zaby, 'Ajman, Al
Fujayrah, Ash Shariqah, Dubayy, and Umm al Qaywayn -
merged to form the United Arab Emirates (UAE). They were
joined in 1972 by Ra's al Khaymah. The UAE's per capita GDP
is on par with those of leading West European nations. Its
generosity with oil revenues and its moderate foreign policy
stance have allowed the UAE to play a vital role in the affairs
of the region.

 UAE has one of the most diverse populations in the Middle
East. 19 % of the population is Emirati, and 23 % is other Arabs
and Iranians. An estimated 85 percent of the population is
comprised of non-citizens, one of the world's highest
percentages of foreign-born in any nation. In addition, since
the mid-1980s, people from all across South Asia have settled
in the UAE. The high living standards and economic
opportunities in the UAE are better than almost anywhere
else in the Middle East and South Asia. This makes the nation
an attractive destination for Indians, Filipinos, Pakistanis, and
Bangladeshis along with a few thousand Sri Lankan. In 2006,
there were approximately 2.15 million Indian nationals .

UAE at a glance
 AREA- 83,600 square kilometers
 Population- 5.8 million (estimated)
 Growth Rate- 9.4% (GDP)
 Political Structure- Federation of seven emirates (Abu Dhabi;
Dubai; Al Ain; Sharjah; Ajman; Umm al-Qaiwain; Ra’s al-
 Religion-Islam
 Language- Arabic
 Literacy- 89 %
 Life Expectancy- 78 years (at birth)
 GDP per Capita- AED 74,900 (at constant 2000 prices) against
 Ethnic groups- Emirati 19%; other Arab and Iranian 23%; South
Asian 50%; other expatriates (includes Westerners and East
Asians) 8% (note: less than 20% are UAE citizens.)
 Economy- Oil & gas, manufacturing, wholesale, retail trade,
construction and real estate, tourism, IT, agriculture and
fisheries. The country is a major oil exporter and the UAE is
one of the richest countries in the world with a GDP per
capita income of $16,500
 Exchange Rate- 3.65 Dh per US $1
Past - Glimpses
 Around 3000 BC it was a international trading centre.
 Islam was introduced in 7th century AD.
 The first European intruders into the region were the
Portuguese in the 16th century, followed in the succeeding
century by the British East India Company.

 By 1820 after British naval attack the rulers of the region

renounced piracy.

 British India administered the region from 1873, and after

1893 Great Britain controlled its foreign policy, without
assuming full sovereignty; the sheikhs maintained authority
within their territories. In 1952 the seven emirates convened a
Trucial Council to coordinate policy.

 Following Britain’s withdrawal from the region in 1970, six of

the seven federated as the independent United Arab Emirates
on December 2, 1971, Ras al Khaimah joined the UAE on
February 11, 1972.
 During the Iran- Iraq War of the 1980s, the UAE tried to
mediate between the two combatants, and later supported
international minesweeping operations in the Gulf. An
attempted coup in Sharjah in June 1987 was defeated through
the intervention of the Supreme Council of Rulers. The United
Arab Emirates was part of the United Nations-led, 28-nation
alliance that defeated Iraq in the Gulf War in 1991.

Recent Developments
• In July 1991 the UAE was involved in the collapse of the Bank
of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI), in which the Abu
Dhabi ruling house had held a 77 per cent interest; Abu Dhabi
agreed to contribute roughly half of the compensation fund
for BCCI depositors.

• A wider application of shari’ah law was ordered in February

1994, to include crimes previously tried by civil courts. A
defense agreement was signed with France in January 1995,
which provided for “consultation” in the event of the UAE
being subject to threats or aggression.

• The first major Cabinet reshuffle since 1990 took place in

March 1997, following the resignation of the government
submitted by the prime minister, Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid
al-Maktoum, who formed a new Cabinet.
--The United Arab Emirates reached an agreement with Oman, in
March 2000, over a disputed section of their border between al-
Quidat and Umm al-Zumol

UAE- Infrastructure ( Snap Shot)

 Agriculture: 20,000 farms with a total of 56,500 hectares of
cultivated land (2006).
 Oil Production:3.16 million barrels per day (2005).
 Factories: 1, 525 (2005).
 Number of banks: 47 with 349 branches (1994).
 Desalination Plants: 42 (1991); 82% of water comes from
 Paved Highways: 5,254 km (2005).
 Commercial Seaports: 15.
 Free Zones: 8. These are: Jebel Ali, Sharjah Airport
International, Hamriyah, Fujairah, Saadyat, Ajman, Ras Al
Khaimah, and Dubai Airport International.
 International Airports: 6.
 Post Offices: 69 (2005).
 the number of national banks reached 24(twenty four) with a
total of 352 branches and 37 pay offices. The number of
foreign banks, meanwhile, reached 32 banks (thirty two) with a
total of 129 branches, including one pay office.
 Among the Emirates, Abu Dhabi accounts for more than half
of the country's total GDP, close to 40% of the population, and
over 90% of crude oil and gas production. Dubai is the second
largest emirate in terms of economic size, and contributes
one quarter of the country's total GDP.

UAE Expat population

Nationality Number (%)

Indian 50%

Nationals ( UAE) 18%

Other GCC 22%

Filipino 8%

Others ( Russian, Chinese 2%


Present Economic Performance

 Increase in GDP
 Increase in Inflation
 Development of Infrastructure
 E-governance
 Corporate Governance
 Increase in profits and revenues of real estate sector
 New taxes or duties levied (parking; house tax; Salik etc.)
 Increase in Foreign Banks
 Introduction of Free-zones
 Introduction of property ownership
 Increase in free-hold properties
 Technological Revolution
 Contribution of oil income in trade has decreased
 Increase in Manufacturing- Agricultural products.
 99 year visa for 99 years lease to nationals of other countries.
 Increase in foreign investment
 Increase in expatriates from other countries (Russians,
Europeans and Australians)
 unemployment among UAE nationals has become a political
issue as it has increased slightly to 2.7%.
 Tourism is on rise
 Retailing and franchising as an industry are growing
 Imports for Exports are on a rise (extriport)
 Increase in number of food processing units
 one of the world's highest per capita incomes
 The UAE's external debt (owed by the private sector only) is
currently 12.5% of GDP (US$16 billion), down from over 25% in
2000-01. Government (domestic) debt is about 8.5% of GDP.
Chart I.1
Real GDP an

Thousand people
The UAE has grown from a small fishing and pearling nation (before
its first export of oil in 1962), into one of the strongest and fastest-
growing economies in the world. The tremendous industrialization
effort undertaken since 1980 took place first in energy-intensive
industries, on the basis of the UAE's comparative advantage, and

subsequently in high-technology industries, such as office and
consumer electronics or medical equipment. The country was also
the first in the region to strategically develop both airport and
seaport facilities in the 1960s, and since then has continuously
recorded strong expansion in transport services to become the
region's main transport hub. In addition, important public
investment has been made to develop tourism, including sports
facilities, leisure parks, and canters for international conferences
and events; Dubai has made a bid to host the 2016 Olympic