The Platinum Group USA    United Arab Emerates

The United Arab Emirates


Land and People

The land is largely hot, dry desert. Located in the eastern portion of the federation are the Jabal al Akhdar Mountains. Less than half of the inhabitants of the UAE are Arabs; there are also Persians, Baluchis, Indians, and Westerners. Only about 20% of the UAE's population is native citizens. The non-indigenous population is mostly from East and South East Asia and was first attracted by the employment provided by the UAE's petroleum boom. Muslims comprise 96% of the population (80% of these are Sunni, the balance Shiite) and the remaining 4% are largely Christian and Hindu. The official language is Arabic, but Farsi and English are widely used, and Hindi and Urdu are spoken by many of the Asians.


His Highness
Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed


The UAE is governed under the constitution of 1971, which was made permanent in 1996. A federal supreme council (FSC), composed of the seven emirate rulers, is the highest constitutional authority in the UAE. A president and vice president are elected by the FSC for five-year terms. The highest legislative body is the unicameral federal national council, with 40 members appointed by the rulers of the constituent states. Local matters are dealt with by the sheikhs. Until his recent death, Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, the ruler of Abu Dhabi, had been president of the UAE since the founding of the federation. The UAE is a member of the United Nations and the Arab League.

His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler of Abu Dhabi, was elected as the new President of the United Arab Emirates on November 3, 2004, to succeed his father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

Sheikh Khalifa has committed himself to continue in the footsteps of his late father, a task that he has set himself for nearly thirty years, since he first became Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi in 1969.

In a statement issued in 1990, Sheikh Khalifa said: "My father is my teacher. I learn something from him every day, follow his path and absorb from him his values, and the need for patience and prudence in all things."


Industries involving the area's oil and natural-gas deposits are still critical to the increasingly diversified economy, but international banking, financial services, regional corporate headquarters, and tourism are also important. The traditional occupations of fishing and pearling are still practiced. Imports include food, manufactured goods, machinery, and chemicals. Trading partners are Japan, South Korea, India, the United States, and Great Britain.

Many consider the development of Dubai a fascinating historical phenomenon of our times. From the Burj al Arab Tower - Dubai's contemporary icon - to it's futuristic development plans, Dubai is quickly becoming known for "A Thousand and One Sights".

For information about Dubai development, please visit:

Dubai Waterfront - City of the Future

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