Thursday, March 3, 2011

United Arab Emirates


United Arab Emirates
77,700 sq km (30,000 sq miles).
2,443,000 (1996).
31.4 per sq km.
Abu Dhabi.
798,000 (1991).
The Emirates are bordered to the north by the Gulf and the Musandam Peninsula, to the east by Oman, to the south and west by Saudi Arabia and to the northwest by Qatar. They comprise a federation of seven small former sheikhdoms. Abu Dhabi is the largest Emirate, and the remainder (Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah, Umm al Qaiwain and Ras al- Khaimah) are known collectively as the Northern States. The land is mountainous and mostly desert. Abu Dhabi is flat and sandy, and within its boundaries is the Buraimi Oasis. Dubai has a 16km (10-mile) deep-water creek, giving it the popular name of 'Pearl of the Gulf'. Sharjah has a deep-water port on the Batinah coast at Khor Fakkan, facing the Indian Ocean. Ras al-Khaimah is the fourth emirate in size. Fujairah, one of the three smaller sheikhdoms located on the Batinah coast, has agricultural potential, while Ajman and Umm al Qaiwain were once small coastal fishing villages.
Federation of seven autonomous Emirates. Head of State: Sheikh Zâyid Bin Sultân al Nahayân (Emir of Abu Dhabi) since 1971. Head of Government: Vice President Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid al Maktoum (Emir of Dubai) since 1979.
Arabic is the official language. English is widely spoken.
Mostly Muslim, of which 16% are Shiite and the remainder Sunni.
GMT + 4.
220/240 volts AC, 50Hz. Square 3-pin plugs are widespread.
Telephone: IDD is available both to and from all states. Country code: 971. Outgoing international code (Abu Dhabi): 00. Main area codes: Abu Dhabi 2; Ajman, Sharjah and Umm al Qaiwain 6; Al Ain 3; Dubai 4; Fujairah 9; Jebel Ali 4 and Ras al-Khaimah 7. There is a good local telephone network. Telephone calls within each state are free. Fax: ETISALAT offices at main centres provide a service. All hotels have facilities. Telegram: Services are run by ETISALAT, which has offices throughout the Emirates and are also available through main post offices. Post: Airmail letters and parcels take about five days to reach Europe. Press: English-language daily newspapers include Gulf News, Khaleej Times and Emirates News. Foreign newspapers are available in hotel bookshops and supermarkets.


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