The United Arab Emirates (in Arabic: الإمارات العربية المتحدة al-ʾImārāt al-ʿArabīyyah al-Muttaḥidah), often referred to as the U.A.E, is a federation of seven emirates. It is a country rich in history and culture and an easy starting point for travels in the Middle East. As a destination UAE is a cultural melting pot with some of the most vibrant and exotic spots for travelers be it local experiences, exotic destinations in the lap of nature, breathtaking man-made structures like the worlds tallest building, thrilling amusement parks, cultural sites with mystical aura, rolling sand dunes, sunny coastlines, rocky mountains with panoramic views and winding roads cutting through unique landscapes or be it shopping maniacs who can get lost in in traditional souks or glide through ultra-modern malls that are among the best in the world. UAE is undoubtedly a melting pot of cultures and also an ideal destination for those seeking education and employment opportunities. UAE offers something for everyone.
Below are some interesting and useful facts about the UAE:
Capital: Abu Dhabi
Official Language: Arabic
Other widely spoken languages in UAE include Bengali, English, Farsi, Hindi, Malayalam, Mandarin, Nepali, Russian, Sinhalese, Tagalog and Urdu.
Political System: The UAE is a constitutional federation of seven emirates >> Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain. Each emirate is governed by a ruler, who jointly form the Federal Supreme Council.
Father of the Nation: H. H. late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, referred to in Native Arabic language as والد الأمة (Waalid Al Ummah). He was also the first President of the UAE.
National Day: December 2nd
Flag: Three equal horizontal bands of green (top), white (middle), and black (bottom) with a wider vertical red band on the hoist side. Green represents hope, joy, optimism and love. It can also symbolise the country’s prosperity. White represents peace and honesty. White is the purest colour and is interpreted by some to symbolise cleanliness. Black stands for the defeat of enemies and also strength of mind. Red represents hardiness, bravery, strength and courage. The vertical red band can also be interpreted as binding all the other meanings together in unity.
Coat of Arms: The UAE’s coat of arms displays the UAE flag surrounded by seven stars, representing the seven emirates. The falcon is also shown holding a parchment in its talons which reads ‘United Arab Emirates’ in Arabic.
National Anthem: The UAE’s National Anthem, Ishi Bilady was originally conceived as an instrumental in 1971. In 1986, Dr. Aref Al Sheikh was given the task to write the words to the UAE’s national anthem, and the Cabinet approved the lyrics.
Religion: Islam is the official religion in the UAE; practice of other religions is allowed.
Time Zone: GMT+4 (Gulf Standard Time)
Area: The UAE area is approximately 71,023.6sq km of land, including some islands in the Arab Gulf, in addition to 27,624.9sq km of territorial water.
Location: UAE is located on the south eastern side of the Arabian peninsula, at the entrance to the Persian Gulf. It shares borders with Oman to the east and Saudi Arabia to the south and west, as well as shares maritime borders with Qatar to the west and Iran to the north.
Geographic Coordinates: The UAE is situated at > Longitude: 51° 35’ – 57°10’ east ; Latitude: 22°35’ – 26°25’ north
Climate: The climate of the UAE generally is a desert climate, warm and sunny in winter, hot and humid during the summer months. The average annual rainfall in the coastal area is fewer than 120 mm (4.7 in), but in some mountainous areas annual rainfall often reaches 350 mm (13.8 in) where it is also generally cooler.
Currency: Emirati dirham (Dh, Dhs or AED). 1 dirham is divided into 100 fils. Coins are in the following denomination: AED 1, 50 fils and 25 fils. Notes or bills are in the denomination of AED 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1,000.
Exchange Rate: DH 3.67 per US dollar. The UAE dirham has been officially pegged to the US dollar since February 2002.
Natural Resources: The UAE’s most important natural resources are oil and gas, more than 90% of which are located in Abu Dhabi.
Fiscal Year: January 1st to December 31st
Taxation: The UAE does not levy income tax on individuals. However, it levies a corporate tax on oil companies and foreign banks. Excise tax is levied on specific goods which are typically harmful to human health or the environment. Value Added Tax is levied on a majority of goods and services at a flat rate of 5 %.
Industries: Oil & gas, petrochemicals, aluminum, cement, ceramics, ship repair, pharmaceuticals, tourism, transport, real estate, financial services.
Working days: Government and semi-government offices operate from Sunday to Thursday. Some private companies are closed only on Fridays while others are closed on both Fridays and Saturdays.
Diplomatic Missions: UAE Embassies and Consular Corps in the world
Foreign Representations in UAE: Embassies, diplomatic missions and Consular Corps in the UAE
UAE International dialing code: +971
Internet domain: The top-level domain is .ae
Official News Agency: Emirates News Agency (WAM) is the official UAE news agency of the UAE Government. It publishes news in multiple languages.
Major Airports in the UAE:
Abu Dhabi International Airport (IATA code: AUH)
Al Ain International Airport (IATA code: AAN)
Dubai International Airport (IATA code: DXB)
Al Maktoum Airport (IATA code: DWC)
Sharjah International Airport (IATA code: SHJ)
Ras Al Khaimah International Airport (IATA code: RKT)
Fujairah International Airport (IATA code: FJR)
Major Seaports in the UAE:
Last Updated: 1st December 2019