Home

Oman vs. United Arab Emirates

Introduction

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Background

The inhabitants of the area of Oman have long prospered from Indian Ocean trade. In the late 18th century, the nascent sultanate in Muscat signed the first in a series of friendship treaties with Britain. Over time, Oman's dependence on British political and military advisors increased, although the sultanate never became a British colony. In 1970, QABOOS bin Said Al-Said overthrew his father, and has since ruled as sultan. Sultan QABOOS has no children and has not designated a successor publicly; the Basic Law of 1996 outlines Oman’s succession procedure. Sultan QABOOS’ extensive modernization program opened the country to the outside world, and the sultan has prioritized strategic ties with the UK and US. Oman's moderate, independent foreign policy has sought to maintain good relations with its neighbors and to avoid external entanglements.

Inspired by the popular uprisings that swept the Middle East and North Africa beginning in January 2011, some Omanis staged demonstrations, calling for more jobs and economic benefits and an end to corruption. In response to those protester demands, QABOOS in 2011 pledged to implement economic and political reforms, such as granting Oman’s bicameral legislative body more power and authorizing direct elections for its lower house, which took place in November 2011. Additionally, the Sultan increased unemployment benefits, and, in August 2012, issued a royal directive mandating the speedy implementation of a national job creation plan for thousands of public and private sector Omani jobs. As part of the government's efforts to decentralize authority and allow greater citizen participation in local governance, Oman successfully conducted its first municipal council elections in December 2012. Announced by the sultan in 2011, the municipal councils have the power to advise the Royal Court on the needs of local districts across Oman's 11 governorates. Sultan QABOOS, Oman's longest reigning monarch, died on 11 January 2020. His cousin, HAYTHAM bin Tariq bin Taimur Al-Said, former Minister of Heritage and Culture, was sworn in as Oman's new sultan the same day.

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 Dhabi, '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. For more than three decades, oil and global finance drove the UAE's economy. In 2008-09, the confluence of falling oil prices, collapsing real estate prices, and the international banking crisis hit the UAE especially hard. The UAE did not experience the "Arab Spring" unrest seen elsewhere in the Middle East in 2010-11, partly because of the government's multi-year, $1.6-billion infrastructure investment plan for the poorer northern emirates, and its aggressive pursuit of advocates of political reform. The UAE in recent years has played a growing role in regional affairs. In addition to donating billions of dollars in economic aid to help stabilize Egypt, the UAE was one of the first countries to join the Defeat-ISIS coalition, and to participate as a key partner in a Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen. On 15 September 2020, the UAE and Bahrain signed a peace agreement (the Abraham Accords) with Israel – brokered by the US – in Washington DC. The UAE and Bahrain thus became the third and fourth Middle Eastern countries, along with Egypt and Jordan, to recognize Israel.

Geography

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
LocationMiddle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Persian Gulf, between Yemen and the UAEMiddle East, bordering the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf, between Oman and Saudi Arabia
Geographic coordinates21 00 N, 57 00 E24 00 N, 54 00 E
Map referencesMiddle EastMiddle East
Areatotal: 309,500 sq km

land: 309,500 sq km

water: 0 sq km
total: 83,600 sq km

land: 83,600 sq km

water: 0 sq km
Area - comparativetwice the size of Georgiaslightly larger than South Carolina; slightly smaller than Maine
Land boundariestotal: 1,561 km

border countries (3): Saudi Arabia 658 km, UAE 609 km, Yemen 294 km
total: 1,066 km

border countries (2): Oman 609 km, Saudi Arabia 457 km
Coastline2,092 km1,318 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
Climatedry desert; hot, humid along coast; hot, dry interior; strong southwest summer monsoon (May to September) in far southdesert; cooler in eastern mountains
Terraincentral desert plain, rugged mountains in north and southflat, barren coastal plain merging into rolling sand dunes of vast desert; mountains in east
Elevation extremeshighest point: Jabal Shams 3,004 m

lowest point: Arabian Sea 0 m

mean elevation: 310 m
highest point: Jabal Yibir 1,527 m

lowest point: Persian Gulf 0 m

mean elevation: 149 m
Natural resourcespetroleum, copper, asbestos, some marble, limestone, chromium, gypsum, natural gaspetroleum, natural gas
Land useagricultural land: 4.7% (2018 est.)

arable land: 0.1% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.1% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 4.5% (2018 est.)

forest: 0% (2018 est.)

other: 95.3% (2018 est.)
agricultural land: 4.6% (2018 est.)

arable land: 0.5% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.5% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 3.6% (2018 est.)

forest: 3.8% (2018 est.)

other: 91.6% (2018 est.)
Irrigated land590 sq km (2012)923 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardssummer winds often raise large sandstorms and dust storms in interior; periodic droughtsfrequent sand and dust storms
Environment - current issueslimited natural freshwater resources; high levels of soil and water salinity in the coastal plains; beach pollution from oil spills; industrial effluents seeping into the water tables and aquifers; desertificaiton due to high winds driving desert sand into arable landsair pollution; rapid population growth and high energy demand contribute to water scarcity; lack of natural freshwater resources compensated by desalination plants; land degradation and desertification; waste generation, beach pollution from oil spills
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
Geography - noteconsists of Oman proper and two northern exclaves, Musandam and Al Madhah; the former is a peninsula that occupies a strategic location adjacent to the Strait of Hormuz, a vital transit point for world crude oilstrategic location along southern approaches to Strait of Hormuz, a vital transit point for world crude oil
Total renewable water resources1.4 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)150 million cubic meters (2017 est.)
Population distributionthe vast majority of the population is located in and around the Al Hagar Mountains in the north of the country; another smaller cluster is found around the city of Salalah in the far south; most of the country remains sparsely poplulatedpopulation is heavily concentrated to the northeast on the Musandam Peninsula; the three largest emirates - Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Sharjah - are home to nearly 85% of the population

Demographics

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Population3,694,755 (July 2021 est.)

note: immigrants make up approximately 46% of the total population (2019)
9,856,612 (July 2021 est.)

note: the UN estimated the country's total population was 9,771,000 as of mid-year 2019; immigrants make up 87.9% of the total population, according to UN data (2019)
Age structure0-14 years: 30.15% (male 561,791/female 533,949)

15-24 years: 17.35% (male 331,000/female 299,516)

25-54 years: 44.81% (male 928,812/female 699,821)

55-64 years: 4.02% (male 77,558/female 68,427)

65 years and over: 3.68% (male 64,152/female 69,663) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 14.45% (male 745,492/female 698,330)

15-24 years: 7.94% (male 431,751/female 361,804)

25-54 years: 68.03% (male 5,204,618/female 1,592,987)

55-64 years: 7.68% (male 658,892/female 108,850)

65 years and over: 1.9% (male 146,221/female 43,138) (2020 est.)
Median agetotal: 26.2 years

male: 27.2 years

female: 25.1 years (2020 est.)
total: 38.4 years

male: 40.4 years

female: 31.5 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate1.89% (2021 est.)0.62% (2021 est.)
Birth rate22.58 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)10.87 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Death rate3.25 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)1.51 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Net migration rate-0.44 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)-3.18 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.11 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.33 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 1.13 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.92 male(s)/female

total population: 1.18 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.07 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.19 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 3.27 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 6.05 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 3.39 male(s)/female

total population: 2.56 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 14.76 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 16.05 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 13.4 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
total: 5.25 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 5.82 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 4.65 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 76.64 years

male: 74.69 years

female: 78.68 years (2021 est.)
total population: 79.37 years

male: 78.04 years

female: 80.78 years (2021 est.)
Total fertility rate2.73 children born/woman (2021 est.)1.65 children born/woman (2021 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.1% (2019)0.1% (2020)
Nationalitynoun: Omani(s)

adjective: Omani
noun: Emirati(s)

adjective: Emirati
Ethnic groupsArab, Baluchi, South Asian (Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Bangladeshi), AfricanEmirati 11.6%, South Asian 59.4% (includes Indian 38.2%, Bangladeshi 9.5%, Pakistani 9.4%, other 2.3%), Egyptian 10.2%, Filipino 6.1%, other 12.8% (2015 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS2,500 (2019)<1,000 (2020)
ReligionsMuslim 85.9%, Christian 6.5%, Hindu 5.5%, Buddhist 0.8%, Jewish <0.1%, other 1%, unaffiliated 0.2% (2010 est.)

note: Omani citizens represent approximately 56.4% of the population and are overwhelming Muslim (Ibadhi and Sunni sects each constitute about 45% and Shia about 5%); Christians, Hindus, and Buddhists account for roughly 5% of Omani citizens
Muslim (official) 76%, Christian 9%, other (primarily Hindu and Buddhist, less than 5% of the population consists of Parsi, Baha'i, Druze, Sikh, Ahmadi, Ismaili, Dawoodi Bohra Muslim, and Jewish) 15% (2005 est.)

note: data represent the total population; as of 2019, immigrants make up about 87.9% of the total population, according to UN data
HIV/AIDS - deaths<100 (2019)100 <100 (2020)
LanguagesArabic (official), English, Baluchi, Swahili, Urdu, Indian dialects

major-language sample(s):
???? ????? ??????? ?????? ???? ?? ???? ????????? ??? ????????? ???????? (Arabic)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.
Arabic (official), English, Hindi, Malayam, Urdu, Pashto, Tagalog, Persian

major-language sample(s):
???? ????? ??????? ?????? ???? ?? ???? ????????? ??? ????????? ???????? (Arabic)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 95.7%

male: 97%

female: 92.7% (2018)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 93.8%

male: 93.1%

female: 95.8% (2015)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 14 years

male: 14 years

female: 15 years (2019)
total: 14 years

male: 14 years

female: 15 years (2017)
Education expenditures6.8% of GDP (2017)NA
Urbanizationurban population: 87% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 2.32% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
urban population: 87.3% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 1.5% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: total: 100% of population

unimproved: total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: total: 98.6% of population

unimproved: total: 1.4% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population1.590 million MUSCAT (capital) (2021)2.921 million Dubai, 1.737 million Sharjah, 1.512 million ABU DHABI (capital) (2021)
Maternal mortality rate19 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)3 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Health expenditures4.1% (2018)4.2% (2018)
Physicians density2 physicians/1,000 population (2018)2.53 physicians/1,000 population (2018)
Hospital bed density1.5 beds/1,000 population (2017)1.4 beds/1,000 population (2017)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate27% (2016)31.7% (2016)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 33.3

youth dependency ratio: 30

elderly dependency ratio: 3.3

potential support ratio: 29.9 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 19.2

youth dependency ratio: 17.7

elderly dependency ratio: 1.5

potential support ratio: 66.4 (2020 est.)

Government

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Country nameconventional long form: Sultanate of Oman

conventional short form: Oman

local long form: Saltanat Uman

local short form: Uman

former: Sultanate of Muscat and Oman

etymology: the origin of the name is uncertain, but it apparently dates back at least 2,000 years since an "Omana" is mentioned by Pliny the Elder (1st century A.D.) and an "Omanon" by Ptolemy (2nd century A.D.)
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 Oman, Trucial States

abbreviation: UAE

etymology: self-descriptive country name; the name "Arabia" can be traced back many centuries B.C., the ancient Egyptians referred to the region as "Ar Rabi"; "emirates" derives from "amir" the Arabic word for "commander," "lord," or "prince"
Government typeabsolute monarchyfederation of monarchies
Capitalname: Muscat

geographic coordinates: 23 37 N, 58 35 E

time difference: UTC+4 (9 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

etymology: the name, whose meaning is uncertain, traces back almost two millennia; two 2nd century A.D. scholars, the geographer Ptolemy and the historian Arrian, both mention an Arabian Sea coastal town of Moscha, which most likely referred to Muscat
name: Abu Dhabi

geographic coordinates: 24 28 N, 54 22 E

time difference: UTC+4 (9 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

etymology: in Arabic, "abu" means "father" and "dhabi" refers to "gazelle"; the name may derive from an abundance of gazelles that used to live in the area, as well as a folk tale involving the "Father of the Gazelle," Shakhbut bin Dhiyab al Nahyan, whose hunting party tracked a gazelle to a spring on the island where Abu Dhabi was founded
Administrative divisions11 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafaza); Ad Dakhiliyah, Al Buraymi, Al Wusta, Az Zahirah, Janub al Batinah (Al Batinah South), Janub ash Sharqiyah (Ash Sharqiyah South), Masqat (Muscat), Musandam, Shamal al Batinah (Al Batinah North), Shamal ash Sharqiyah (Ash Sharqiyah North), Zufar (Dhofar)7 emirates (imarat, singular - imarah); Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi), 'Ajman, Al Fujayrah, Ash Shariqah (Sharjah), Dubayy (Dubai), Ra's al Khaymah, Umm al Qaywayn
Independence1650 (expulsion of the Portuguese)2 December 1971 (from the UK)
National holidayNational Day, 18 November; note - celebrates Oman's independence from Portugal in 1650 and the birthday of Sultan QABOOS bin Said al Said, who reigned from 1970 to 2020Independence Day (National Day), 2 December (1971)
Constitutionhistory: promulgated by royal decree 6 November 1996 (the Basic Law of the Sultanate of Oman serves as the constitution); amended by royal decree in 2011

amendments: promulgated by the sultan or proposed by the Council of Oman and drafted by a technical committee as stipulated by royal decree and then promulgated through royal decree; amended by royal decree 2011, 2021
history: previous 1971 (provisional); latest drafted in 1979, became permanent May 1996

amendments: proposed by the Supreme Council and submitted to the Federal National Council; passage requires at least a two-thirds majority vote of Federal National Council members present and approval of the Supreme Council president; amended 2009
Legal systemmixed legal system of Anglo-Saxon law and Islamic lawmixed legal system of Islamic (sharia) law and civil law
Suffrage21 years of age; universal; note - members of the military and security forces by law cannot votelimited; note - rulers of the seven emirates each select a proportion of voters for the Federal National Council (FNC) that together account for about 12 percent of Emirati citizens
Executive branchchief of state: Sultan and Prime Minister HAYTHAM bin Tariq bin Taimur Al-Said (since 11 January 2020); note - the monarch is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: Sultan and Prime Minister HAYTHAM bin Tariq bin Taimur Al-Said (since 11 January 2020)

cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the monarch

elections/appointments: members of the Ruling Family Council determine a successor from the sultan's extended family; if the Council cannot form a consensus within 3 days of the sultan's death or incapacitation, the Defense Council will relay a predetermined heir as chosen by the sultan
chief of state: President KHALIFA bin Zayid Al-Nuhayyan (since 2 November 2004), ruler of Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi) (since 4 November 2004); Vice President and Prime Minister MUHAMMAD BIN RASHID Al-Maktum (since 5 January 2006)

head of government: Prime Minister Vice President MUHAMMAD BIN RASHID Al-Maktum (since 5 January 2006); Deputy Prime Ministers SAIF bin Zayid Al-Nuhayyan, MANSUR bin Zayid Al-Nuhayyan (both since 11 May 2009)

cabinet: Council of Ministers announced by the prime minister and approved by the president

elections/appointments: president and vice president indirectly elected by the Federal Supreme Council - composed of the rulers of the 7 emirates - for a 5-year term (no term limits); election last held 3 November 2009 (next election NA); prime minister and deputy prime minister appointed by the president

election results: KHALIFA bin Zayid Al-Nuhayyan reelected president; FSC vote NA

note: there is also a Federal Supreme Council (FSC) composed of the 7 emirate rulers; the FSC is the highest constitutional authority in the UAE; establishes general policies and sanctions federal legislation; meets 4 times a year; Abu Zaby (Abu Dhabi) and Dubayy (Dubai) rulers have effective veto power
Legislative branchdescription: bicameral Council of Oman or Majlis Oman consists of:
Council of State or Majlis al-Dawla (85 seats including the chairman; members appointed by the sultan from among former government officials and prominent educators, businessmen, and citizens)
Consultative Council or Majlis al-Shura (86 seats; members directly elected in single- and 2-seat constituencies by simple majority popular vote to serve renewable 4-year terms); note - since political reforms in 2011, legislation from the Consultative Council is submitted to the Council of State for review by the Royal Court

elections: Council of State - last appointments on 11 July 2019 (next - NA)
Consultative Assembly - last held on 27 October 2019 (next to be held in October 2023)

election results:
Council of State - composition - men 70, women 15, percent of women 17.6%
Consultative Council percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA (organized political parties in Oman are legally banned); composition men 84, women 2, percent of women 2.3%; note - total Council of Oman percent of women 9.9%
description: unicameral Federal National Council (FNC) or Majlis al-Ittihad al-Watani (40 seats; 20 members indirectly elected using single non-transferable vote by an electoral college whose members are selected by each emirate ruler proportional to its FNC membership, and 20 members appointed by the rulers of the 7 constituent states; members serve 4-year terms)

elections: last held for indirectly elected members on 5 October 2019 (next to be held in October 2023)

election results: all candidates ran as independents; seats by emirate - Abu Dhabi 4, Dubai 4, Sharjah 3, Ras al-Khaimah 3, Ajman 2, Fujairah 2, Umm al-Quwain 2; composition (preliminary) - 13 men, 7 women, percent of elected women 35%; note - to attain overall FNC gender parity, 13 women and 7 men will be appointed; overall FNC percent of women 50%
Judicial branchhighest courts: Supreme Court (consists of 5 judges)

judge selection and term of office: judges nominated by the 9-member Supreme Judicial Council (chaired by the monarch) and appointed by the monarch; judges appointed for life

subordinate courts: Courts of Appeal; Administrative Court; Courts of First Instance; sharia courts; magistrates' courts; military courts
highest courts: Federal Supreme Court (consists of the court president and 4 judges; jurisdiction limited to federal cases)

judge selection and term of office: judges appointed by the federal president following approval by the Federal Supreme Council, the highest executive and legislative authority consisting of the 7 emirate rulers; judges serve until retirement age or the expiry of their appointment terms

subordinate courts: Federal Court of Cassation (determines the constitutionality of laws promulgated at the federal and emirate level; federal level courts of first instance and appeals courts); the emirates of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Ra's al Khaymah have parallel court systems; the other 4 emirates have incorporated their courts into the federal system; note - the Abu Dhabi Global Market Courts and the Dubai International Financial Center Courts, the country’s two largest financial free zones, both adjudicate civil and commercial disputes.
Political parties and leadersnone; note - organized political parties are legally banned in Oman, and loyalties tend to form around tribal affiliationsnone; political parties are banned
International organization participationABEDA, AFESD, AMF, CAEU, FAO, G-77, GCC, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (NGOs), IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, LAS, MIGA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTOABEDA, AfDB (nonregional member), AFESD, AMF, BIS, CAEU, CICA, FAO, G-77, GCC, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, LAS, MIGA, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, OIF (observer), OPCW, OPEC, PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Moosa Hamdan Moosa AL TAI (since 17 February 2021)

chancery: 2535 Belmont Road, NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 387-1980

FAX: [1] (202) 745-4933

email address and website:
washington@fm.gov.om

https://www.culturaloffice.info/aboutomaniembassy
chief of mission: Ambassador Yusif bin Mani bin Said al-UTAYBA (since 28 July 2008)

chancery: 3522 International Court NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 243-2400

FAX: [1] (202) 243-2432

email address and website:
info@uaeembassy-usa.org

https://www.uae-embassy.org/

consulate(s) general: Boston, Los Angeles, New York
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Leslie M. TSOU (since 19 January 2020)

embassy: P.C. 115, Madinat Al Sultan Qaboos, Muscat

mailing address: 6220 Muscat Place, Washington DC  20521

telephone: [968] 2464-3400

FAX: [968] 2464-3740

email address and website:
ConsularMuscat@state.gov

https://om.usembassy.gov/
chief of mission: ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Sean MURPHY (since August 2020)

embassy: Embassies District, Plot 38, Sector W59-02, Street No. 4, Abu Dhabi

mailing address: 6010 Abu Dhabi Place, Washington DC 20521-6010

telephone: [971] (2) 414-2200

FAX: [971] (2) 414-2241

email address and website:
abudhabiacs@state.gov

https://ae.usembassy.gov/

consulate(s) general: Dubai
Flag descriptionthree horizontal bands of white (top), red, and green of equal width with a broad, vertical, red band on the hoist side; the national emblem (a khanjar dagger in its sheath superimposed on two crossed swords in scabbards) in white is centered near the top of the vertical band; white represents peace and prosperity, red recalls battles against foreign invaders, and green symbolizes the Jebel al Akhdar (Green Mountains) and fertilitythree equal horizontal bands of green (top), white, and black with a wider vertical red band on the hoist side; the flag incorporates all four Pan-Arab colors, which in this case represent fertility (green), neutrality (white), petroleum resources (black), and unity (red); red was the traditional color incorporated into all flags of the emirates before their unification
National anthemname: "Nashid as-Salaam as-Sultani" (The Sultan's Anthem)

lyrics/music: Rashid bin Uzayyiz al KHUSAIDI/James Frederick MILLS, arranged by Bernard EBBINGHAUS

note: adopted 1932; new lyrics written after QABOOS bin Said al Said gained power in 1970; first performed by the band of a British ship as a salute to the Sultan during a 1932 visit to Muscat; the bandmaster of the HMS Hawkins was asked to write a salutation to the Sultan on the occasion of his ship visit
name: "Nashid al-watani al-imarati" (National Anthem of the UAE)

lyrics/music: AREF Al Sheikh Abdullah Al Hassan/Mohamad Abdel WAHAB

note: music adopted 1971, lyrics adopted 1996; Mohamad Abdel WAHAB also composed the music for the anthem of Tunisia
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCthas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)khanjar dagger superimposed on two crossed swords; national colors: red, white, greengolden falcon; national colors: green, white, black, red
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: the father must be a citizen of Oman

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: unknown
citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: the father must be a citizen of the United Arab Emirates; if the father is unknown, the mother must be a citizen

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 30 years

Economy

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Economy - overview

Oman is heavily dependent on oil and gas resources, which can generate between and 68% and 85% of government revenue, depending on fluctuations in commodity prices. In 2016, low global oil prices drove Oman’s budget deficit to $13.8 billion, or approximately 20% of GDP, but the budget deficit is estimated to have reduced to 12% of GDP in 2017 as Oman reduced government subsidies. As of January 2018, Oman has sufficient foreign assets to support its currency’s fixed exchange rates. It is issuing debt to cover its deficit.

Oman is using enhanced oil recovery techniques to boost production, but it has simultaneously pursued a development plan that focuses on diversification, industrialization, and privatization, with the objective of reducing the oil sector's contribution to GDP. The key components of the government's diversification strategy are tourism, shipping and logistics, mining, manufacturing, and aquaculture.

Muscat also has notably focused on creating more Omani jobs to employ the rising number of nationals entering the workforce. However, high social welfare benefits - that had increased in the wake of the 2011 Arab Spring - have made it impossible for the government to balance its budget in light of current oil prices. In response, Omani officials imposed austerity measures on its gasoline and diesel subsidies in 2016. These spending cuts have had only a moderate effect on the government’s budget, which is projected to again face a deficit of $7.8 billion in 2018.

The UAE has an open economy with a high per capita income and a sizable annual trade surplus. Successful efforts at economic diversification have reduced the portion of GDP from the oil and gas sector to 30%.

Since the discovery of oil in the UAE nearly 60 years ago, the country has undergone a profound transformation from an impoverished region of small desert principalities to a modern state with a high standard of living. The government has increased spending on job creation and infrastructure expansion and is opening up utilities to greater private sector involvement. The country's free trade zones - offering 100% foreign ownership and zero taxes - are helping to attract foreign investors.

The global financial crisis of 2008-09, tight international credit, and deflated asset prices constricted the economy in 2009. UAE authorities tried to blunt the crisis by increasing spending and boosting liquidity in the banking sector. The crisis hit Dubai hardest, as it was heavily exposed to depressed real estate prices. Dubai lacked sufficient cash to meet its debt obligations, prompting global concern about its solvency and ultimately a $20 billion bailout from the UAE Central Bank and Abu Dhabi Government that was refinanced in March 2014.

The UAE’s dependence on oil is a significant long-term challenge, although the UAE is one of the most diversified countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council. Low oil prices have prompted the UAE to cut expenditures, including on some social programs, but the UAE has sufficient assets in its sovereign investment funds to cover its deficits. The government reduced fuel subsidies in August 2015, and introduced excise taxes (50% on sweetened carbonated beverages and 100% on energy drinks and tobacco) in October 2017. A five-percent value-added tax was introduced in January 2018. The UAE's strategic plan for the next few years focuses on economic diversification, promoting the UAE as a global trade and tourism hub, developing industry, and creating more job opportunities for nationals through improved education and increased private sector employment.

GDP (purchasing power parity)$135.814 billion (2019 est.)

$138.089 billion (2018 est.)

$135.696 billion (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
$655.789 billion (2019 est.)

$644.968 billion (2018 est.)

$637.384 billion (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - real growth rate-0.9% (2017 est.)

5% (2016 est.)

4.7% (2015 est.)
0.8% (2017 est.)

3% (2016 est.)

5.1% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$27,299 (2019 est.)

$28,593 (2018 est.)

$29,082 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
$67,119 (2019 est.)

$66,968 (2018 est.)

$67,184 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 1.8% (2017 est.)

industry: 46.4% (2017 est.)

services: 51.8% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 0.9% (2017 est.)

industry: 49.8% (2017 est.)

services: 49.2% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty lineNA19.5% (2003 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: NA

highest 10%: NA
lowest 10%: NA

highest 10%: NA
Inflation rate (consumer prices)0.1% (2019 est.)

0.7% (2018 est.)

1.7% (2017 est.)
-1.9% (2019 est.)

3% (2018 est.)

1.9% (2017 est.)
Labor force2.255 million (2016 est.)

note: about 60% of the labor force is non-national
5.344 million (2017 est.)

note: expatriates account for about 85% of the workforce
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 4.7% NA

industry: 49.6% NA

services: 45% NA (2016 est.)
agriculture: 7%

industry: 15%

services: 78% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate

NA

1.6% (2016 est.)

3.6% (2014 est.)
Budgetrevenues: 22.14 billion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 31.92 billion (2017 est.)
revenues: 110.2 billion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 111.1 billion (2017 est.)

note: the UAE federal budget does not account for emirate-level spending in Abu Dhabi and Dubai
Industriescrude oil production and refining, natural and liquefied natural gas production; construction, cement, copper, steel, chemicals, optic fiberpetroleum and petrochemicals; fishing, aluminum, cement, fertilizer, commercial ship repair, construction materials, handicrafts, textiles
Industrial production growth rate-3% (2017 est.)1.8% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - productsdates, tomatoes, vegetables, goat milk, milk, cucumbers, green chillies/peppers, watermelons, sorghum, melonsdates, cucumbers, tomatoes, goat meat, eggs, milk, poultry, carrots/turnips, goat milk, milk
Exports$103.3 billion (2017 est.)

$27.54 billion (2016 est.)
$308.5 billion (2017 est.)

$298.6 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commoditiescrude petroleum, natural gas, refined petroleum, iron products, fertilizers (2019)crude petroleum, refined petroleum, gold, jewelry, broadcasting equipment (2019)
Exports - partnersChina 46%, India 8%, Japan 6%, South Korea 6%, United Arab Emirates 6%, Saudi Arabia 5% (2019)India 11%, Japan 10%, Saudi Arabia 7%, Switzerland 6%, China 6%, Iraq 6% (2019)
Imports$24.12 billion (2017 est.)

$21.29 billion (2016 est.)
$229.2 billion (2017 est.)

$226.5 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiescars, refined petroleum, broadcasting equipment, gold, iron (2019)gold, broadcasting equipment, jewelry, refined petroleum, diamonds (2019)
Imports - partnersUnited Arab Emirates 36%, China 10%, Japan 7%, India 7%, United States 5% (2019)China 15%, India 12%, Untied States 7% (2019)
Debt - external$46.27 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$27.05 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$237.6 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$218.7 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratesOmani rials (OMR) per US dollar -

0.38505 (2020 est.)

0.38505 (2019 est.)

0.385 (2018 est.)

0.3845 (2014 est.)

0.3845 (2013 est.)
Emirati dirhams (AED) per US dollar -

3.67315 (2020 est.)

3.67315 (2019 est.)

3.67315 (2018 est.)

3.673 (2014 est.)

3.673 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar yearcalendar year
Public debt46.9% of GDP (2017 est.)

32.5% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: excludes indebtedness of state-owned enterprises
19.7% of GDP (2017 est.)

20.2% of GDP (2016 est.)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$16.09 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$20.26 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$95.37 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$85.39 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Current Account Balance-$10.76 billion (2017 est.)

-$12.32 billion (2016 est.)
$26.47 billion (2017 est.)

$13.23 billion (2016 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$76.883 billion (2019 est.)$421.077 billion (2019 est.)
Taxes and other revenues31.3% (of GDP) (2017 est.)28.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-13.8% (of GDP) (2017 est.)-0.2% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 13.7%

male: 10.3%

female: 33.9% (2016)
total: 7.2%

male: 4.9%

female: 15% (2019 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 36.8% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 26.2% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 27.8% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 3% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 51.5% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -46.6% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 34.9% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 12.3% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 23% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 1.8% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 100.4% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -72.4% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving14.8% of GDP (2019 est.)

19% of GDP (2018 est.)

12% of GDP (2017 est.)
28.5% of GDP (2017 est.)

30.9% of GDP (2016 est.)

30.7% of GDP (2015 est.)

Energy

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Electricity - production32.16 billion kWh (2016 est.)121.8 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption28.92 billion kWh (2016 est.)113.2 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports0 kWh (2016 est.)0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports0 kWh (2016 est.)1.141 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production979,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)3.216 million bbl/day (2018 est.)
Oil - imports0 bbl/day (2015 est.)0 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - exports844,100 bbl/day (2015 est.)2.552 million bbl/day (2015 est.)
Oil - proved reserves5.373 billion bbl (1 January 2018 est.)97.8 billion bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves651.3 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)6.091 trillion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - production31.23 billion cu m (2017 est.)62.01 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - consumption21.94 billion cu m (2017 est.)74.48 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports11.16 billion cu m (2017 est.)7.504 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports1.982 billion cu m (2017 est.)20.22 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity8.167 million kW (2016 est.)28.91 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels100% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)99% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)1% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production229,600 bbl/day (2015 est.)943,500 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption188,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)896,000 bbl/day (2016 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports33,700 bbl/day (2015 est.)817,700 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports6,041 bbl/day (2015 est.)392,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Electricity accesselectrification - total population: 99% (2019)

electrification - urban areas: 100% (2019)

electrification - rural areas: 92% (2019)
electrification - total population: 100% (2020)

Telecommunications

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 592,196

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 16.66 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 2,362,602

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 24.31 (2019 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal subscriptions: 6,383,458

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 179.57 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 19,602,815

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 201.67 (2019 est.)
Internet country code.om.ae
Internet userstotal: 2,801,932

percent of population: 80.19% (July 2018 est.)
total: 9,550,945

percent of population: 98.45% (July 2018 est.)
Telecommunication systemsgeneral assessment:

modern system consisting of open-wire, microwave, and radiotelephone communication stations; domestic satellite system; progressive mobile sector with both 3G and 4G LTE networks and readiness for 5G launch; competition among mobile operators; government program to improve fiber network; important communications hub in the Middle East, with access to numerous submarine cables enabling increased bandwidth; major importer of broadcasting equipment and computers from UAE (2021)

(2020)

domestic: fixed-line 13 per 100 and mobile-cellular 138 per 100, subscribership both increasing with fixed-line phone service gradually being introduced to remote villages using wireless local loop systems (2019)

international: country code - 968; landing points for GSA, AAE-1, SeaMeWe-5, Tata TGN-Gulf, FALCON, GBICS/MENA, MENA/Guld Bridge International, TW1, BBG, EIG, OMRAN/EPEG, and POI submarine cables providing connectivity to Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia and Europe; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) (2019)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments

general assessment: one of the world’s most connected countries with modern infrastructure and record Internet, broadband, and mobile use; low-cost smartphones drive mobile-broadband penetration; LTE networks cover most of the population with launch of 5G in partnership with Chinese company ZTE; submarine cables connect to South Africa, Middle East, Pakistan, and Europe; ISPs are fully or partially owned by state, allowing control over flow of information; during pandemic, there was a surge of Internet use from home, with temporary government relaxation of restrictions on streaming such as Zoom, Skype, and Microsoft Teams; government censorship and surveillance of online platforms; service prices are highest in the region, yet affordable for population’s affluent users; government launched free digital platforms for students; Dubai and Abu Dhabi are smart cities with government plan to digitize services across country; major importer of broadcasting equipment from China and exporter of broadcasting equipment to Iraq and Saudi Arabia (2021) (2020)

domestic: microwave radio relay, fiber-optic and coaxial cable; fixed-line 24 per 100 and mobile-cellular 201 per 100 (2019)

international: country code - 971; landing points for the FLAG, SEA-ME-WE-3 ,-4 & -5, Qater UAE Submarine Cable System, FALCON, FOG, Tat TGN-Gulf, OMRAN/EPEG Cable System, AAE-1, BBG, EIG, FEA, GBICS/MENA, IMEWE, Orient Express, TEAMS, TW1 and the UAE-Iran submarine cables, linking to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Southeast Asia and Australia; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Indian) (2020)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments
Broadband - fixed subscriptionstotal: 473,070

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 13.31 (2019 est.)
total: 3,045,957

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 31.34 (2019 est.)
Broadcast media1 state-run TV broadcaster; TV stations transmitting from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Iran, and Yemen available via satellite TV; state-run radio operates multiple stations; first private radio station began operating in 2007 and several additional stations now operating (2019)except for the many organizations now operating in media free zones in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, most TV and radio stations remain government-owned; widespread use of satellite dishes provides access to pan-Arab and other international broadcasts; restrictions since June 2017 on some satellite channels and websites originating from or otherwise linked to Qatar (2018)

Transportation

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Roadwaystotal: 60,230 km (2012)

paved: 29,685 km (includes 1,943 km of expressways) (2012)

unpaved: 30,545 km (2012)
total: 4,080 km (2008)

paved: 4,080 km (includes 253 km of expressways) (2008)
Pipelines106 km condensate, 4224 km gas, 3558 km oil, 33 km oil/gas/water, 264 km refined products (2013)533 km condensate, 3277 km gas, 300 km liquid petroleum gas, 3287 km oil, 24 km oil/gas/water, 218 km refined products, 99 km water (2013)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Mina' Qabus, Salalah, Suhar

container port(s) (TEUs): Salalah (4,109,000) (2019)

LNG terminal(s) (export): Qalhat
major seaport(s): Al Fujayrah, Mina' Jabal 'Ali (Dubai), Khor Fakkan (Khawr Fakkan) (Sharjah), Mubarraz Island (Abu Dhabi), Mina' Rashid (Dubai), Mina' Saqr (Ra's al Khaymah)

container port(s) (TEUs): Dubai Port (14,111,000) (2019)

LNG terminal(s) (export): Das Island
Merchant marinetotal: 55

by type: general cargo 10, other 45 (2020)
total: 640

by type: container ship 3, general cargo 120, oil tanker 19, other 498 (2020)
Airportstotal: 132 (2013)total: 43 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 13 (2017)

over 3,047 m: 7 (2017)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 5 (2017)

914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2017)
total: 25 (2013)

over 3,047 m: 12 (2013)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 3 (2013)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 5 (2013)

914 to 1,523 m: 3 (2013)

under 914 m: 2 (2013)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 119 (2013)

over 3,047 m: 2 (2013)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 7 (2013)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 51 (2013)

914 to 1,523 m: 33 (2013)

under 914 m: 26 (2013)
total: 18 (2013)

over 3,047 m: 1 (2013)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1 (2013)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 4 (2013)

914 to 1,523 m: 6 (2013)

under 914 m: 6 (2013)
Heliports3 (2013)5 (2013)
National air transport systemnumber of registered air carriers: 2 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 57

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 10,438,241 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 510.43 million mt-km (2018)
number of registered air carriers: 10 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 497

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 95,533,069 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 15,962,900,000 mt-km (2018)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefixA4OA6

Military

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Military branchesSultan's Armed Forces (SAF): Royal Army of Oman (RAO), Royal Navy of Oman (RNO), Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO), Royal Guard of Oman (RGO); Royal Oman Police Coast Guard (2021)United Arab Emirates Armed Forces: Land Forces, Navy Forces, Air Force, Presidential Guard; Ministry of Interior: Critical Infrastructure Coastal Patrol Agency (CICPA) (2021)
Military service age and obligation18-30 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription (2019)18-30 years of age for compulsory military service for men; 17 years of age for male volunteers with parental approval; 24-month general service obligation, 16 months for secondary school graduates; women can volunteer to serve for 9 months regardless of education (2019)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP10.5% of GDP (2020 est.)

8.8% of GDP (2019)

8.2% of GDP (2018)

12.8% of GDP (2017)

16% of GDP (2016)
5.2% of GDP (2017)

6% of GDP (2016)

7% of GDP (2015)

5.8% of GDP (2014)

6.1% of GDP (2013)

Transnational Issues

OmanUnited Arab Emirates
Disputes - international

boundary agreement reportedly signed and ratified with UAE in 2003 for entire border, including Oman's Musandam Peninsula and Al Madhah exclave, but details of the alignment have not been made public

boundary agreement was signed and ratified with Oman in 2003 for entire border, including Oman's Musandam Peninsula and Al Madhah enclaves, but contents of the agreement and detailed maps showing the alignment have not been published; Iran and UAE dispute Tunb Islands and Abu Musa Island, which Iran occupies

Source: CIA Factbook