Yemen vs. Oman


BackgroundNorth Yemen became independent from the Ottoman Empire in 1918. The British, who had set up a protectorate area around the southern port of Aden in the 19th century, withdrew in 1967 from what became South Yemen. Three years later, the southern government adopted a Marxist orientation. The massive exodus of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis from the south to the north contributed to two decades of hostility between the states. The two countries were formally unified as the Republic of Yemen in 1990. A southern secessionist movement and brief civil war in 1994 was quickly subdued. In 2000, Saudi Arabia and Yemen agreed to delineate their border. Fighting in the northwest between the government and the Huthis, a Zaydi Shia Muslim minority, continued intermittently from 2004 to 2010. The southern secessionist movement was revitalized in 2007.
Public rallies in Sana'a against then President SALIH - inspired by similar demonstrations in Tunisia and Egypt - slowly built momentum starting in late January 2011 fueled by complaints over high unemployment, poor economic conditions, and corruption. By the following month, some protests had resulted in violence, and the demonstrations had spread to other major cities. By March the opposition had hardened its demands and was unifying behind calls for SALIH's immediate ouster. In April 2011, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), in an attempt to mediate the crisis in Yemen, proposed the GGC Initiative, an agreement in which the president would step down in exchange for immunity from prosecution. SALIH's refusal to sign an agreement led to further violence. The UN Security Council passed Resolution 2014 in October 2011 calling for an end to the violence and completing a power transfer deal. In November 2011, SALIH signed the GCC Initiative to step down and to transfer some of his powers to Vice President Abd Rabuh Mansur HADI. Following HADI's uncontested election victory in February 2012, SALIH formally transferred his powers. In accordance with the GCC initiative, Yemen launched a National Dialogue Conference (NDC) in March 2013 to discuss key constitutional, political, and social issues. HADI concluded the NDC in January 2014 and planned to begin implementing subsequent steps in the transition process, including constitutional drafting, a constitutional referendum, and national elections.
The Huthis, perceiving their grievances were not addressed in the NDC, joined forces with SALIH and expanded their influence in northwestern Yemen, culminating in a major offensive against military units and rival tribes and enabling their forces to overrun the capital, Sanaa, in September 2014. In January 2015, the Huthis surrounded the presidential palace, HADI's residence, and key government facilities, prompting HADI and the cabinet to submit their resignations. HADI fled to Aden in February 2015 and rescinded his resignation. He subsequently escaped to Oman and then moved to Saudi Arabia and asked the GCC to intervene militarily in Yemen to protect the legitimate government from the Huthis. In March, Saudi Arabia assembled a coalition of Arab militaries and began airstrikes against the Huthis and Huthi-affiliated forces. Ground fighting between Huthi-aligned forces and resistance groups backed by the Saudi-led coalition continued through 2016. In 2016, the UN brokered a months-long cessation of hostilities that reduced airstrikes and fighting, and initiated peace talks in Kuwait. However, the talks ended without agreement. The Huthis and SALIH’s political party announced a Supreme Political Council in August 2016 and a National Salvation Government, including a prime minister and several dozen cabinet members, in November 2016, to govern in Sanaa and further challenge the legitimacy of HADI’s government. Further attempts at peace have failed while neither side has made decisive battlefield gains, perpetuating the conflict and deepening the divisions between northern and southern Yemen. Amid rising tensions between the Huthis and SALIH, sporadic clashes erupted in mid-2017, and Huthi forces killed SALIH in early December 2017.
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, but he has not designated a successor. His extensive modernization program has opened the country to the outside world, while preserving the longstanding close 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 legislative and regulatory powers to the Majlis al-Shura and increasing unemployment benefits. Additionally, in August 2012, the Sultan announced 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. The Sultan returned to Oman in March 2015 after eight months in Germany, where he received medical treatment. He has since appeared publicly on a few occasions.


LocationMiddle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden, and Red Sea, between Oman and Saudi Arabia
Middle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Persian Gulf, between Yemen and the UAE
Geographic coordinates15 00 N, 48 00 E
21 00 N, 57 00 E
Map referencesMiddle East
Middle East
Areatotal: 527,968 sq km
land: 527,968 sq km
water: 0 sq km
note: includes Perim, Socotra, the former Yemen Arab Republic (YAR or North Yemen), and the former People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (PDRY or South Yemen)
total: 309,500 sq km
land: 309,500 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparativealmost four times the size of Alabama; slightly larger than twice the size of Wyoming
twice the size of Georgia; slightly smaller than Kansas
Land boundariestotal: 1,601 km
border countries (2): Oman 294 km, Saudi Arabia 1,307 km
total: 1,561 km
border countries (3): Saudi Arabia 658 km, UAE 609 km, Yemen 294 km
Coastline1,906 km
2,092 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or to the edge of the continental margin
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climatemostly desert; hot and humid along west coast; temperate in western mountains affected by seasonal monsoon; extraordinarily hot, dry, harsh desert in east
dry desert; hot, humid along coast; hot, dry interior; strong southwest summer monsoon (May to September) in far south
Terrainnarrow coastal plain backed by flat-topped hills and rugged mountains; dissected upland desert plains in center slope into the desert interior of the Arabian Peninsula
central desert plain, rugged mountains in north and south
Elevation extremesmean elevation: 999 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Arabian Sea 0 m
highest point: Jabal an Nabi Shu'ayb 3,666 m
mean elevation: 310 m
elevation extremes: lowest point: Arabian Sea 0 m
highest point: Jabal Shams 3,004 m
Natural resourcespetroleum, fish, rock salt, marble; small deposits of coal, gold, lead, nickel, and copper; fertile soil in west
petroleum, copper, asbestos, some marble, limestone, chromium, gypsum, natural gas
Land useagricultural land: 44.5%
arable land 2.2%; permanent crops 0.6%; permanent pasture 41.7%
forest: 1%
other: 54.5% (2011 est.)
agricultural land: 4.7%
arable land 0.1%; permanent crops 0.1%; permanent pasture 4.5%
forest: 0%
other: 95.3% (2011 est.)
Irrigated land6,800 sq km (2012)
590 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardssandstorms and dust storms in summer
volcanism: limited volcanic activity; Jebel at Tair (Jabal al-Tair, Jebel Teir, Jabal al-Tayr, Jazirat at-Tair) (244 m), which forms an island in the Red Sea, erupted in 2007 after awakening from dormancy; other historically active volcanoes include Harra of Arhab, Harras of Dhamar, Harra es-Sawad, and Jebel Zubair, although many of these have not erupted in over a century
summer winds often raise large sandstorms and dust storms in interior; periodic droughts
Environment - current issueslimited natural freshwater resources; inadequate supplies of potable water; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification
rising soil salinity; beach pollution from oil spills; limited natural freshwater resources
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - notestrategic location on Bab el Mandeb, the strait linking the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, one of world's most active shipping lanes
consists 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 oil
Population distributionthe vast majority of the population is found in the Asir Mountains (part of the larger Sarawat Mountain system), located in the far western region of the country
the 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 poplulated


Population28,036,829 (July 2017 est.)
3,424,386 (July 2017 est.)
note: immigrants make up almost 45% of the total population, according to UN data (2017)
Age structure0-14 years: 39.83% (male 5,681,084/female 5,485,959)
15-24 years: 21.21% (male 3,015,232/female 2,930,329)
25-54 years: 32.27% (male 4,625,967/female 4,422,418)
55-64 years: 3.94% (male 506,759/female 598,973)
65 years and over: 2.75% (male 353,953/female 416,155) (2017 est.)
0-14 years: 30.1% (male 528,554/female 502,272)
15-24 years: 18.69% (male 335,764/female 304,207)
25-54 years: 43.8% (male 864,858/female 635,006)
55-64 years: 3.92% (male 71,477/female 62,793)
65 years and over: 3.49% (male 58,561/female 60,894) (2017 est.)
Median agetotal: 19.5 years
male: 19.3 years
female: 19.6 years (2017 est.)
total: 25.6 years
male: 26.6 years
female: 24.2 years (2017 est.)
Population growth rate2.28% (2017 est.)
2.03% (2017 est.)
Birth rate28.4 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)
24 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Death rate6 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)
3.3 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Net migration rate0.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)
-0.4 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.85 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.87 male(s)/female
total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.1 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.38 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1.14 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.99 male(s)/female
total population: 1.19 male(s)/female (2016 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 46 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 50.1 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 41.7 deaths/1,000 live births (2017 est.)
total: 12.8 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 13.1 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 12.5 deaths/1,000 live births (2017 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 65.9 years
male: 63.7 years
female: 68.2 years (2017 est.)
total population: 75.7 years
male: 73.7 years
female: 77.7 years (2017 est.)
Total fertility rate3.63 children born/woman (2017 est.)
2.82 children born/woman (2017 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate<.1% (2016 est.)
Nationalitynoun: Yemeni(s)
adjective: Yemeni
noun: Omani(s)
adjective: Omani
Ethnic groupspredominantly Arab; but also Afro-Arab, South Asians, Europeans
Arab, Baluchi, South Asian (Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Bangladeshi), African
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS9,900 (2016 est.)
ReligionsMuslim 99.1% (official; virtually all are citizens, an estimated 65% are Sunni and 35% are Shia), other 0.9% (includes Jewish, Baha'i, Hindu, and Christian; many are refugees or temporary foreign residents) (2010 est.)
Muslim 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 60% of the population and are overwhelming Muslim (Ibadhi and Sunni sects each constitute about 45% and Shia about 5%); Christians, Hindus, and Buddhists accounting for roughly 5% of Omani citizens
HIV/AIDS - deaths<500 (2016 est.)
LanguagesArabic (official)
note: a distinct Socotri language is widely used on Socotra Island and Archipelago; Mahri is still fairly widely spoken in eastern Yemen
Arabic (official), English, Baluchi, Urdu, Indian dialects
Literacydefinition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 70.1%
male: 85.1%
female: 55% (2015 est.)
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 93%
male: 96.6%
female: 86% (2015 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 9 years
male: 10 years
female: 8 years (2011)
total: 14 years
male: 13 years
female: 15 years (2015)
Education expenditures4.6% of GDP (2008)
5% of GDP (2013)
Urbanizationurban population: 35.8% of total population (2017)
rate of urbanization: 3.76% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
urban population: 78.5% of total population (2017)
rate of urbanization: 2.17% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved:
urban: 72% of population
rural: 46.5% of population
total: 54.9% of population
urban: 28% of population
rural: 53.5% of population
total: 45.1% of population (2012 est.)
urban: 95.5% of population
rural: 86.1% of population
total: 93.4% of population
urban: 4.5% of population
rural: 13.9% of population
total: 6.6% of population (2015 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved:
urban: 92.5% of population
rural: 34.1% of population
total: 53.3% of population
urban: 7.5% of population
rural: 65.9% of population
total: 46.7% of population (2012 est.)
urban: 97.3% of population
rural: 94.7% of population
total: 96.7% of population
urban: 2.7% of population
rural: 5.3% of population
total: 3.3% of population (2015 est.)
Major cities - populationSANAA (capital) 2.962 million; Aden 882,000 (2015)
MUSCAT (capital) 838,000 (2015)
Maternal mortality rate385 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
17 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)
Children under the age of 5 years underweight39.9% (2013)
9.7% (2014)
Health expenditures5.6% of GDP (2014)
3.6% of GDP (2014)
Physicians density0.31 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
1.54 physicians/1,000 population (2014)
Hospital bed density0.7 beds/1,000 population (2012)
1.7 beds/1,000 population (2012)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate17.1% (2016)
27% (2016)
Contraceptive prevalence rate33.5% (2013)
29.7% (2014)
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 76.8
youth dependency ratio: 71.7
elderly dependency ratio: 5.1
potential support ratio: 19.8 (2015 est.)
total dependency ratio: 32.4
youth dependency ratio: 29.4
elderly dependency ratio: 3.1
potential support ratio: 32.6 (2015 est.)


Country name"conventional long form: Republic of Yemen
conventional short form: Yemen
local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al Yamaniyah
local short form: Al Yaman
former: Yemen Arab Republic [Yemen (Sanaa) or North Yemen] and People's Democratic Republic of Yemen [Yemen (Aden) or South Yemen]
etymology: name derivation remains unclear but may come from the Arab term ""yumn"" (happiness) and be related to the region's classical name ""Arabia Felix"" (Fertile or Happy Arabia); the Romans referred to the rest of the peninsula as ""Arabia Deserta"" (Deserted Arabia)
"conventional 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.)
Government typein transition
absolute monarchy
Capitalname: Sanaa
geographic coordinates: 15 21 N, 44 12 E
time difference: UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
name: Muscat
geographic coordinates: 23 37 N, 58 35 E
time difference: UTC+4 (9 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions22 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah); Abyan, 'Adan (Aden), Ad Dali', Al Bayda', Al Hudaydah, Al Jawf, Al Mahrah, Al Mahwit, Amanat al 'Asimah (Sanaa City), 'Amran, Arkhabil Suqutra (Socotra Archipelago), Dhamar, Hadramawt, Hajjah, Ibb, Lahij, Ma'rib, Raymah, Sa'dah, San'a' (Sanaa), Shabwah, Ta'izz
11 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)
Independence22 May 1990 (Republic of Yemen was established with the merger of the Yemen Arab Republic [Yemen (Sanaa) or North Yemen] and the Marxist-dominated People's Democratic Republic of Yemen [Yemen (Aden) or South Yemen]); notable earlier dates: North Yemen became independent on 1 November 1918 (from the Ottoman Empire) and became a republic with the overthrow of the theocratic Imamate on 27 September 1962; South Yemen became independent on 30 November 1967 (from the UK)
1650 (expulsion of the Portuguese)
National holidayUnification Day, 22 May (1990)
National Day, 18 November; note - coincides with the birthday of Sultan QABOOS, 18 November (1940)
Constitutionhistory: adopted by referendum 16 May 1991 (following unification); amended several times, last in 2009; note - after the National Dialogue ended in January 2015, a presidentially appointed Constitutional Drafting Committee worked to prepare a new draft constitution that was expected to be put to a national referendum before being adopted; however, the president’s resignation in January 2015 and subsequent conflict have interrupted the process (2016)
history: 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 2011 (2016)
Legal systemmixed legal system of Islamic law, Napoleonic law, English common law, and customary law
mixed legal system of Anglo-Saxon law and Islamic law
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
21 years of age; universal; note - members of the military and security forces by law cannot vote
Executive branchchief of state: President Abd Rabuh Mansur HADI (since 21 February 2012); Vice President Ali Mohsin al-AHMAR, Gen. (since 3 April 2016)
head of government: Prime Minister Ahmad Obaid bin DAGHIR (since 3 April 2016)
cabinet: appointed by the president
elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 7-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 21 February 2012 (next election NA); note - a special election was held on 21 February 2012 to remove Ali Abdallah SALIH under the terms of a Gulf Cooperation Council-mediated deal during the political crisis of 2011; vice president appointed by the president; prime minister appointed by the president
election results: Abd Rabuh Mansur HADI (GPC) elected as a consensus president with about 50% popular participation; no other candidates
chief of state: Sultan and Prime Minister QABOOS bin Said Al-Said (sultan since 23 July 1970 and prime minister since 23 July 1972); note - the monarch is both chief of state and head of government
head of government: Sultan and Prime Minister QABOOS bin Said Al-Said (sultan since 23 July 1970 and prime minister since 23 July 1972)
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
Legislative branchdescription: bicameral Parliament or Majlis consists of the Shura Council or Majlis Alshoora (111 seats; members appointed by the president; member tenure NA) and the House of Representatives or Majlis al Nuwaab (301 seats; members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote to serve 6-year terms)
elections: last held on 27 April 2003 (next scheduled for April 2009 but postponed indefinitely)
election results: House of Representatives percent of vote by party - GPC 58.0%, Islah 22.6%, YSP 3.8%, Unionist Party 1.9%, other 13.7%; seats by party - GPC 238, Islah 46, YSP 8, Nasserist Unionist Party 3, National Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party 2, independent 4
description: bicameral Council of Oman or Majlis Oman consists of the 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) and the Consultative Council or Majlis al-Shura (85 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: Consultative Assembly - last held on 25 October 2015 (next to be held in October 2019)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; note - organized political parties in Oman are legally banned
Judicial branchhighest court(s): Supreme Court (consists of the president of the Court, 2 deputies, and nearly 50 judges; court organized into constitutional, civil, commercial, family, administrative, criminal, military, and appeals scrutiny divisions)
judge selection and term of office: judges appointed by the Supreme Judicial Council, chaired by the president of the republic and consisting of 10 high-ranking judicial officers; judges appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 65
subordinate courts: appeal courts; district or first instance courts; commercial courts
highest court(s): 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
Political parties and leadersGeneral People's Congress or GPC [Sadiq Abu RAS]
National Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party [Qassem Salam SAID]
Nasserist Unionist People's Organization [Abdulmalik al-MEKHLAFI]
Yemeni Reform Grouping or Islah [Muhammed Abdallah al-YADUMI]
Yemeni Socialist Party or YSP [Dr. Abd al-Rahman Umar al-SAQQAF]
none; note - organized political parties are legally banned in Oman, and loyalties tend to form around tribal affiliations
Political pressure groups and leadersHuthis
Muslim Brotherhood
Women National Committee
other: conservative tribal groups; southern secessionist groups; al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Ahmad Awadh BIN MUBARAK (since 3 August 2015)
chancery: 2319 Wyoming Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 965-4760
FAX: [1] (202) 337-2017
chief of mission: Ambassador Hunaina bint Sultan bin Ahmad al-MUGHAIRI (since 2 December 2005)
chancery: 2535 Belmont Road, NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 387-1980
FAX: [1] (202) 745-4933
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador Matthew H. TUELLER (since 10 June 2014)
embassy: Sa'awan Street, Sanaa; note - Embassy closed in March 2015; relocated to Jeddah, Saudia Arabia
mailing address: P. O. Box 22347, Sanaa
telephone: [967] (1) 755-2000 ext. 2153 or 2266
FAX: [967] (1) 303-182
chief of mission: Ambassador Marc J. SIEVERS (since 15 December 2016)
embassy: Jamait Ad Duwal Al Arabiyya Street, Al Khuwair area, Muscat
mailing address: P.O. Box 202, P.C. 115, Madinat Al Sultan Qaboos, Muscat
telephone: [968] 24-643-400
FAX: [968] 24-643-740
Flag descriptionthree equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and black; the band colors derive from the Arab Liberation flag and represent oppression (black), overcome through bloody struggle (red), to be replaced by a bright future (white)
note: similar to the flag of Syria, which has two green stars in the white band, and of Iraq, which has an Arabic inscription centered in the white band; also similar to the flag of Egypt, which has a heraldic eagle centered in the white band
three horizontal bands of white, 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 fertility
National anthem"name: ""al-qumhuriyatu l-muttahida"" (United Republic)
lyrics/music: Abdullah Abdulwahab NOA'MAN/Ayyoab Tarish ABSI
note: adopted 1990; the music first served as the anthem for South Yemen before unification with North Yemen in 1990
"name: ""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
International law organization participationhas not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
National symbol(s)golden eagle; national colors: red, white, black
khanjar dagger superimposed on two crossed swords; national colors: red, white, green
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: the father must be a citizen of Yemen; if the father is unknown, the mother must be a citizen
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years
citizenship by birth: no
citizenship by descent only: the father must be a citizen of Oman
dual citizenship recognized: no
residency requirement for naturalization: unknown


Economy - overviewYemen is a low-income country that faces difficult long-term challenges to stabilizing and growing its economy, and the current conflict has only exacerbated those issues. The ongoing war has halted Yemen’s exports, pressured the currency’s exchange rate, accelerated inflation, severely limited food and fuel imports, and caused widespread damage to infrastructure. More than 80% of the population is in need of humanitarian assistance and over half are food insecure.

Prior to the start of the conflict in 2014, Yemen was highly dependent on declining oil and gas resources for revenue. Oil and gas earnings accounted for roughly 25% of GDP and 65% of government revenue. The Yemeni Government regularly faced annual budget shortfalls and tried to diversify the Yemeni economy through a reform program designed to bolster non-oil sectors of the economy and foreign investment. In July 2014, the government continued reform efforts by eliminating some fuel subsidies and in August 2014, the IMF approved a three-year, $570 million Extended Credit Facility for Yemen.

However, the conflict that began in 2014 stalled these reform efforts and ongoing fighting continues to accelerate the country’s economic decline. In September 2016, President HADI announced the move of the main branch of Central Bank of Yemen from Sanaa to Aden where his government could exert greater control over the central bank’s dwindling resources. Regardless of which group controls the main branch, the central bank system is struggling to function. Yemen’s Central Bank’s foreign reserves, which stood at roughly $5.2 billion prior to the conflict, have declined to negligible amounts. The Central Bank can no longer fully support imports of critical goods or the country’s exchange rate. The country also is facing a growing liquidity crisis and rising inflation. The private sector is hemorrhaging, with almost all businesses making substantial layoffs. Access to food and other critical commodities such as medical equipment is limited across the country due to security issues on the ground. The Social Welfare Fund, a cash transfer program for Yemen’s neediest, is no longer operational and has not made any disbursements since late 2014.

Yemen will require significant international assistance during and after the protracted conflict to stabilize its economy. Long-term challenges include a high population growth rate, high unemployment, declining water resources, and severe food scarcity.
Oman is heavily dependent on its dwindling oil resources, which generate 84% of government revenue. In 2016, low global oil prices drove Oman’s budget deficit to $11.5 billion, or approximately 19% of GDP, but the budget deficit was reduced to 13% of GDP in 2017 as Oman reduced government subsidies. Oman has limited foreign assets and is issuing debt to cover its deficit.

Oman is using enhanced oil recovery techniques to boost production, but 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 from 46% at present to 9% by 2020 in accordance with Oman’s ninth five-year development plan. Tourism and gas-based industries are key components of the government's diversification strategy.

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 challenged the government's ability to effectively balance its budget in light of low export oil prices. In response, Omani officials imposed austerity measures to its gasoline and diesel subsidies in 2016, with further subsidy cuts planned for electricity and liquid petroleum gas. The spending cuts have faced some public opposition, which could hinder their implementation.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$68.95 billion (2017 est.)
$70.37 billion (2016 est.)
$78 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
$187.9 billion (2017 est.)
$187.9 billion (2016 est.)
$182.4 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - real growth rate-2% (2017 est.)
-9.8% (2016 est.)
-28.1% (2015 est.)
0% (2017 est.)
3% (2016 est.)
4.2% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$2,300 (2017 est.)
$2,400 (2016 est.)
$2,800 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
$45,500 (2017 est.)
$46,900 (2016 est.)
$48,300 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 24.1%
industry: 14.3%
services: 61.6% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 1.7%
industry: 45.2%
services: 53% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line54% (2014 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.6%
highest 10%: 30.3% (2008 est.)
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices)20% (2017 est.)
5% (2016 est.)
3.2% (2017 est.)
1.1% (2016 est.)
Labor force7.425 million (2017 est.)
note: about 60% of the labor force is non-national (2007 est.)
Labor force - by occupationnote: most people are employed in agriculture and herding; services, construction, industry, and commerce account for less than one-fourth of the labor force
agriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%
Unemployment rate27% (2014 est.)
35% (2003 est.)
15% (2004 est.)
Budgetrevenues: $3.467 billion
expenditures: $5.232 billion (2017 est.)
revenues: $22.68 billion
expenditures: $32.07 billion (2017 est.)
Industriescrude oil production and petroleum refining; small-scale production of cotton textiles, leather goods; food processing; handicrafts; aluminum products; cement; commercial ship repair; natural gas production
crude oil production and refining, natural and liquefied natural gas production; construction, cement, copper, steel, chemicals, optic fiber
Industrial production growth rate13.7% (2017 est.)
0.3% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - productsgrain, fruits, vegetables, pulses, qat, coffee, cotton; dairy products, livestock (sheep, goats, cattle, camels), poultry; fish
dates, limes, bananas, alfalfa, vegetables; camels, cattle; fish
Exports$501.2 million (2017 est.)
$163.6 million (2016 est.)
$31.9 billion (2017 est.)
$27.54 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commoditiescrude oil, coffee, dried and salted fish, liquefied natural gas
petroleum, reexports, fish, metals, textiles
Exports - partnersEgypt 26%, Saudi Arabia 15.4%, Oman 11.3%, Malaysia 9.8%, Thailand 5.8%, UAE 4.9% (2016)
China 47.8%, UAE 8.3%, India 4.1% (2016)
Imports$4.573 billion (2017 est.)
$3.117 billion (2016 est.)
$22.71 billion (2017 est.)
$21.29 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiesfood and live animals, machinery and equipment, chemicals
machinery and transport equipment, manufactured goods, food, livestock, lubricants
Imports - partnersUAE 12.8%, China 12%, Turkey 8%, Saudi Arabia 8%, Indonesia 6.8%, Brazil 6.6%, India 4.8% (2016)
UAE 44.9%, China 4.8%, India 4.8% (2016)
Debt - external$7.252 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$7.181 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$39.17 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$27.05 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratesYemeni rials (YER) per US dollar -
275 (2017 est.)
214.9 (2016 est.)
214.9 (2015 est.)
228 (2014 est.)
214.89 (2013 est.)
Omani rials (OMR) per US dollar -
0.3845 (2017 est.)
0.3845 (2016 est.)
0.3845 (2015 est.)
0.3845 (2014 est.)
0.3845 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year
calendar year
Public debt135.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
119.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
41.3% of GDP (2017 est.)
31.4% of GDP (2016 est.)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$245.1 million (31 December 2017 est.)
$592.6 million (31 December 2016 est.)
$19.96 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$20.26 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Current Account Balance-$579 million (2017 est.)
-$1.532 billion (2016 est.)
-$10.3 billion (2017 est.)
-$12.32 billion (2016 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$25.67 billion (2016 est.)
$71.93 billion (2016 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home$NA
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
$41.12 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$37.83 billion (31 December 2014 est.)
$36.77 billion (31 December 2013 est.)
Central bank discount rateNA%
2% (31 December 2010)
0.05% (31 December 2009)
Commercial bank prime lending rate26% (31 December 2017 est.)
27% (31 December 2016 est.)
5.4% (31 December 2017 est.)
5.08% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$3.706 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.515 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$48.24 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$46.47 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money$5.542 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$6.718 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$12.7 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$12.95 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money$9.338 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$11.95 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
$41.44 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$40.11 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Taxes and other revenues13.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
31.5% of GDP (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-6.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
-13% of GDP (2017 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 121.3%
government consumption: 13.5%
investment in fixed capital: 3.7%
investment in inventories: -7.8%
exports of goods and services: 4.2%
imports of goods and services: -34.8% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 34.5%
government consumption: 24.6%
investment in fixed capital: 35.3%
investment in inventories: 2.1%
exports of goods and services: 51%
imports of goods and services: -47.4% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving0.1% of GDP (2017 est.)
-4.1% of GDP (2016 est.)
-3.7% of GDP (2015 est.)
19.7% of GDP (2017 est.)
19.4% of GDP (2016 est.)
18.3% of GDP (2015 est.)


Electricity - production5.006 billion kWh (2015 est.)
30.79 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - consumption3.634 billion kWh (2015 est.)
27.62 billion kWh (2015 est.)
Electricity - exports0 kWh (2016 est.)
0 kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports0 kWh (2016 est.)
0 kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production21,670 bbl/day (2016 est.)
1.007 million bbl/day (2016 est.)
Oil - imports0 bbl/day (2014 est.)
6,970 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Oil - exports49,590 bbl/day (2014 est.)
745,800 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Oil - proved reserves3 billion bbl (1 January 2017 es)
5.373 billion bbl (1 January 2017 es)
Natural gas - proved reserves478.5 billion cu m (1 January 2017 es)
651.3 billion cu m (1 January 2017 es)
Natural gas - production2.85 billion cu m (2015 est.)
29.93 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Natural gas - consumption1.19 billion cu m (2015 est.)
38.03 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Natural gas - exports8.8 billion cu m (2014 est.)
1.99 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Natural gas - imports0 cu m (2013 est.)
10 billion cu m (2015 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity1.534 million kW (2015 est.)
7.869 million kW (2015 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels99% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
100% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources2% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
0% of total installed capacity (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production56,840 bbl/day (2014 est.)
224,000 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption140,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
176,000 bbl/day (2015 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports27,290 bbl/day (2014 est.)
33,240 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports84,340 bbl/day (2014 est.)
713.9 bbl/day (2014 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy22 million Mt (2013 est.)
69 million Mt (2013 est.)
Electricity accesspopulation without electricity: 13,300,000
electrification - total population: 48%
electrification - urban areas: 79%
electrification - rural areas: 33% (2013)
population without electricity: 100,000
electrification - total population: 98%
electrification - urban areas: 99%
electrification - rural areas: 93% (2013)


Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 1.213 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 4 (July 2016 est.)
total subscriptions: 422,518
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 13 (July 2016 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal: 17.536 million
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 64 (July 2016 est.)
total: 6,866,260
subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 205 (July 2016 est.)
Telephone systemgeneral assessment: cell phone penetration growing rapidly
domestic: the national network consists of microwave radio relay, cable, tropospheric scatter, GSM and CDMA mobile-cellular telephone systems; fixed-line teledensity remains low by regional standards but mobile cellular use expanding apace
international: country code - 967; landing point for the international submarine cable Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG); satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (2 Indian Ocean and 1 Atlantic Ocean), 1 Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean region), and 2 Arabsat; microwave radio relay to Saudi Arabia and Djibouti (2016)
general assessment: modern system consisting of open-wire, microwave, and radiotelephone communication stations; limited coaxial cable; domestic satellite system with 8 earth stations
domestic: fixed-line and mobile-cellular subscribership both increasing with fixed-line phone service gradually being introduced to remote villages using wireless local loop systems
international: country code - 968; the Fiber-Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG) and the SEA-ME-WE-3 submarine cable provide connectivity to Asia, the Middle East, and Europe; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Indian Ocean), 1 Arabsat (2016)
Internet country code.ye
Internet userstotal: 6,732,928
percent of population: 24.6% (July 2016 est.)
total: 2,342,483
percent of population: 69.8% (July 2016 est.)
Broadcast mediastate-run TV with 2 stations; state-run radio with 2 national radio stations and 5 local stations; stations from Oman and Saudi Arabia can be accessed (2007)
1 state-run TV broadcaster; TV stations transmitting from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Yemen available via satellite TV; state-run radio operates multiple stations; first private radio station began operating in 2007 and 2 additional stations now operating (2007)


Roadwaystotal: 71,300 km
paved: 6,200 km
unpaved: 65,100 km (2005)
total: 60,230 km
paved: 29,685 km (includes 1,943 km of expressways)
unpaved: 30,545 km (2012)
Pipelinesgas 641 km; liquid petroleum gas 22 km; oil 1,370 km (2013)
condensate 106 km; gas 4,224 km; oil 3,558 km; oil/gas/water 33 km; refined products 264 km (2013)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Aden, Al Hudaydah, Al Mukalla
major seaport(s): Mina' Qabus, Salalah, Suhar
container port(s) (TEUs): Salalah (3,200,000)
LNG terminal(s) (export): Qalhat
Merchant marinetotal: 31
by type: general cargo 3, oil tanker 4, other 24 (2017)
total: 51
by type: general cargo 9, other 42 (2017)
Airports57 (2013)
132 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 17
over 3,047 m: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 9
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2013)
total: 13
over 3,047 m: 7
2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2017)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 40
over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
1,524 to 2,437 m: 7
914 to 1,523 m: 16
under 914 m: 9 (2013)
total: 119
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 7
1,524 to 2,437 m: 51
914 to 1,523 m: 33
under 914 m: 26 (2013)
National air transport systemnumber of registered air carriers: 2
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 10
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 1,387,999
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 0 mt-km (2015)
number of registered air carriers: 1
inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 45
annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 6,365,784
annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 412,234,008 mt-km (2015)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefix7O (2016)
A4O (2016)


Military branchesLand Forces, Naval and Coastal Defense Forces (includes Marines), Air and Air Defense Force (al-Quwwat al-Jawwiya al-Yemeniya), Border Guards, Strategic Reserve Forces (2013)
Sultan's Armed Forces (SAF): Royal Army of Oman, Royal Navy of Oman, Royal Air Force of Oman (al-Quwwat al-Jawwiya al-Sultanat Oman) (2013)
Military service age and obligation18 is the legal minimum age for voluntary military service; no conscription; 2-year service obligation (2012)
18-30 years of age for voluntary military service; no conscription (2012)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP3.97% of GDP (2014)
4.08% of GDP (2013)
4.57% of GDP (2012)
4.93% of GDP (2011)
13.73% of GDP (2016)
14.38% of GDP (2015)
13.51% of GDP (2014)
14.81% of GDP (2013)
16.08% of GDP (2012)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - internationalSaudi Arabia has reinforced its concrete-filled security barrier along sections of the fully demarcated border with Yemen to stem illegal cross-border activities
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
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 5,877 (Ethiopia) (2016); 256,169 (Somalia) (2017)
IDPs: 2,014,026 (conflict in Sa'ada Governorate; clashes between al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula and government forces) (2017)
refugees (country of origin): 5,000 (Yemen) (2017)

Source: CIA Factbook