February 18, 2009 / 1:38 PM / 11 years ago

FACTBOX-Some key facts about emirates of Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Feb 18 (Reuters) - Dubai, the financial and tourism centre for the Arab Gulf, faces a big test as one of its most high profile companies, Borse Dubai, struggles to secure market funding to avoid defaulting on about $3.4 billion in debt.

It will show whether Dubai can muscle its way out of the crisis alone or whether the federal government, dominated by Dubai’s wealthy neighbour Abu Dhabi, will provide a safety net. (Click on [ID:nLI269014] for story)

Following are some details about the UAE emirates of Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES:

CONSTITUENT EMIRATES — Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ras al-Khaimah, Fujairah, Ajman and Umm al-Qaiwain.

INVESTMENTS ABROAD — UAE was the second largest Arab FDI investor after Kuwait during 2006-07, with an outward investment of more than $17bn, according to financial website Zawya, quoting figures by the Inter-Arab Investment Guarantee Corporation.

HISTORY:

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a federation of seven emirates near the mouth of the Mideast Gulf.

In the 18th century Portugal and The Netherlands extended their holdings in the region, but retreated with the growth of British naval power there. Following a series of truces with Britain in the 19th century the emirates united to form the Trucial States. The states gained autonomy following World War Two. UAE became an independent country in 1971, with the city of Abu Dhabi serving as the capital.

POPULATION - 4.36 million (2007)

AREA - 83,600 (sq. km) GDP - $129.70 billion (2005)

MAJOR INVESTMENTS ABROAD:

- Alliance Medical - 600 million pounds ($854.2 million)

- Mauser AG - 850 million euro ($1,075.5 million)

- Travelodge Hotels Ltd - 675 million pounds ($961 million)

- Doncasters Group Ltd - 700 million pounds ($996.6 million)

- The Tussauds Group - 800 million pounds ($1,139 million)

- HSBC Holdings plc - undisclosed amount.

- EADS N.V. - 3.12 percent of the outstanding share capital.

- Sony Corporation - Undisclosed amount.

- DaimlerChrysler AG - Around two percent of the outstanding share capital.

- ICICI Bank Limited - 2.87 percent of the outstanding share capital.

GDP BREAKDOWN - The non-oil sector contributed 96.8 percent of GDP in 2006 and oil sector 3.2 percent. Among non-oil sectors the biggest contribution came from wholesale and retail trade (34.6 percent), manufacturing (15.6 percent), real estate (15.2 percent) and financial sector (9.3 percent).

GDP - 223.2 billion AED or $60.7 billion (2006)

Per Capita GDP - 156,852 AED, or $ 42,716.8 (2006)

HISTORY — In 1833 when some 800 members of the Bani Yas tribe, led by the Maktoum Family, settled at the mouth of the creek. Dubai soon became a centre for fishing, pearling and sea trade and by the turn of the 20th century was a successful port. By the 1930s Dubai’s population was nearly 20,000, a quarter of whom were expatriates.

Oil was discovered in 1966, spurring infrastructure development and modernisation. The 1980s and early 1990s saw its emergence as a major tourist destination.

POPULATION - 1.6 million (2008)

SIZE - 3,885 square kilometres. Dubai is the second largest emirate in the UAE.

MAJOR INVESTMENTS ABROAD:

- Eastern European Trust Plc - 16.0 percent.

- Macquarie International Infrastructure Fund Ltd - 9.8 percent.

- Egyptian Financial Group Hermes Holding Company - 8.3 percent.

- Suez Cement Company - 7.6 percent.

- Ziopharm Oncology Inc - 5.1 percent.

- Citigroup - 4.9 percent.

- Ares Management LLC - 20 percent.

- Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Limited - 10 percent.

- Apollo Management LP - 9 percent.

MAJOR SOURCES OF REVENUE - Holding more than 90 percent of the UAE’s oil reserves, Abu Dhabi wants to wean its economy away from relying on oil export revenues.

In 2005-2007 oil contributed 59 percent to GDP.

The emirate is projecting real growth in the non-oil sector of about 9.5 percent per year to 2015, when these sectors should contribute 50 percent of Abu Dhabi’s GDP. Among the key engines of growth would be petrochemicals, metals, aviation, pharmaceuticals, tourism, financial services and telecommunications.

HISTORY: The booming pearling industry in the area today known as Abu Dhabi city attracted the Bani Yas clan, led by the Sheikh of Al Bu Falah of the Al Nahyan family, to Abu Dhabi from Liwa oasis district. They have been in power since the 18th century.

Abu Dhabi signed the British-sponsored General Treaty of Peace in 1820 and the maritime truce of 1835. Under the terms of the Exclusive Agreement of 1892, Abu Dhabi’s foreign affairs were placed under British control. In 1968 Britain announced its planned withdrawal and Abu Dhabi rallied the rulers of the other emirates to form an independent country, the United Arab Emirates, in 1971.

POPULATION - 1.46 million at the end of 2006, inclusive of Al Ain, the Western region and the Islands.

AREA - 67,340 square kilometres, equivalent to about 80 percent of the UAE’s total land area.

Sources: Reuters/World Bank; Official Portal of Dubai Government; Dubai Statistics Centre (here); britannica.com; The Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute (www.swfinstitute.org/fund/adia.php)

Writing by Jijo Jacob, Editing by David Cutler

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