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United Arab Emirates:
Economy

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United Arab Emirates Page


Other pages in this profile of the United Arab Emirates:
Geography, People, Government, Communications & Transportation, Military & Transnational Issues.
Economy - overview
Definition
The UAE has an open economy with a high per capita income and a sizable annual trade surplus. Despite largely successful efforts at economic diversification, nearly 40% of GDP is still directly based on oil and gas output. Since the discovery of oil in the UAE more than 30 years ago, the UAE 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. In April 2004, the UAE signed a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement with Washington and in November 2004 agreed to undertake negotiations toward a Free Trade Agreement with the US. The country's Free Trade Zones - offering 100% foreign ownership and zero taxes - are helping to attract foreign investors. Higher oil revenue, strong liquidity, housing shortages, and cheap credit in 2005-07 led to a surge in asset prices (shares and real estate) and consumer inflation. Rising prices are increasing the operating costs for businesses in the UAE and adversely impacting government employees and others on fixed incomes. Dependence on oil and a large expatriate workforce are significant long-term challenges. The UAE's strategic plan for the next few years focuses on diversification and creating more opportunities for nationals through improved education and increased private sector employment.
GDP (purchasing power parity)
Definition - World rank and map
$167.3 billion (2007 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)
Definition
$192.6 billion (2007 est.)
GDP - real growth rate
Definition - World rank and map
7.4% (2007 est.)
GDP - per capita
Definition - World rank and map
$37,300 (2007 est.)
GDP - composition by sector
Definition
agriculture: 1.8%
industry: 59.3%
services: 38.9% (2007 est.)
Labor force
Definition
3.065 million (2007 est.)
Labor force - by occupation
Definition
agriculture: 7%
industry: 15%
services: 78% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate
Definition - World rank and map
2.4% (2001)
Population below poverty line
Definition
19.5% (2003)
Household income or consumption by percentage share
Definition
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices)
Definition - World rank and map
11% (2007 est.)
Investment (gross fixed)
Definition - World rank and map
21.8% of GDP (2007 est.)
Budget
Definition
revenues: $58.88 billion
expenditures: $38.06 billion (2007 est.)
Public debt
Definition - World rank and map
22.9% of GDP (2007 est.)
Agriculture - products
Definition
dates, vegetables, watermelons; poultry, eggs, dairy products; fish
Industries
Definition
petroleum and petrochemicals; fishing, aluminum, cement, fertilizers, commercial ship repair, construction materials, some boat building, handicrafts, textiles
Industrial production growth rate
Definition - World rank and map
4.3% (2007 est.)
Electricity - production
Definition - World rank and map
57.06 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - consumption
Definition - World rank and map
52.62 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - consumption per capita
Definition - World rank and map
11,386.2 kWh (2005)
Electricity - exports
Definition
0 kWh (2005)
Electricity - imports
Definition
0 kWh (2005)
Oil - production
Definition - World rank and map
2.54 million bbl/day (2006 est.)
Oil - consumption
Definition - World rank and map
372,000 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - consumption per 1,000 people
Definition - World rank and map
80.5 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - exports
Definition - World rank and map
2.54 million bbl/day (2004 est.)
Oil - imports
Definition - World rank and map
137,200 bbl/day (2004)
Oil - proved reserves
Definition - World rank and map
97.8 billion bbl (2007 est.)
Natural gas - production
Definition - World rank and map
45.07 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - consumption
Definition - World rank and map
39.56 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - consumption per capita
Definition - World rank and map
8,560 cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - exports
Definition - World rank and map
6.848 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - imports
Definition - World rank and map
1.343 billion cu m (2005)
Natural gas - proved reserves
Definition - World rank and map
5.823 trillion cu m (1 January 2006 est.)
Current account balance
Definition - World rank and map
$41.67 billion (2007 est.)
Exports
Definition - World rank and map
$156.6 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)
Exports - commodities
Definition
crude oil 45%, natural gas, reexports, dried fish, dates
Exports - partners
Definition
Japan 23.4%, South Korea 10.3%, Thailand 5%, India 4.8% (2006)
Imports
Definition - World rank and map
$101.6 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)
Imports - commodities
Definition
machinery and transport equipment, chemicals, food
Imports - partners
Definition
China 13.1%, India 10.2%, US 8.9%, Japan 6.2%, Germany 6.1%, Italy 4.7% (2006)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold
Definition - World rank and map
$76.62 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Debt - external
Definition - World rank and map
$57.52 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home
Definition
$44.37 billion (2007 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad
Definition
$14.14 billion (2007 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares
Definition
$138.5 billion (2006)
Economic aid - donor
Definition
since its founding in 1971, the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development has given about $5.2 billion in aid to 56 countries (2004)
Economic aid - recipient
Definition
$5.36 million (2004)
Currency (code)
Definition
Emirati dirham (AED)
Exchange rates
Definition
Emirati dirhams per US dollar - 3.673 (2007), 3.673 (2006), 3.6725 (2005), 3.6725 (2004), 3.6725 (2003)
note: officially pegged to the US dollar since February 2002
Fiscal year
Definition
calendar year


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