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Qatar:
Geography

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Background
Definition
Ruled by the al-Thani family since the mid-1800s, Qatar transformed itself from a poor British protectorate noted mainly for pearling into an independent state with significant oil and natural gas revenues. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Qatari economy was crippled by a continuous siphoning off of petroleum revenues by the Amir, who had ruled the country since 1972. His son, the current Amir HAMAD bin Khalifa al-Thani, overthrew him in a bloodless coup in 1995. In 2001, Qatar resolved its longstanding border disputes with both Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. As of 2007, oil and natural gas revenues had enabled Qatar to attain the highest per capita income in the world.
Location
Definition
Middle East, peninsula bordering the Persian Gulf and Saudi Arabia
Geographic coordinates
Definition
25 30 N, 51 15 E
Map references
Definition
Middle East
Area
Definition - World rank and map
total: 11,437 sq km
land: 11,437 sq km
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative
Definition
slightly smaller than Connecticut
Land boundaries
Definition
total: 60 km
border countries: Saudi Arabia 60 km
Coastline
Definition
563 km
Maritime claims
Definition
territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: as determined by bilateral agreements or the median line
Climate
Definition
arid; mild, pleasant winters; very hot, humid summers
Terrain
Definition
mostly flat and barren desert covered with loose sand and gravel
Elevation extremes
Definition
lowest point: Persian Gulf 0 m
highest point: Qurayn Abu al Bawl 103 m
Natural resources
Definition
petroleum, natural gas, fish
Land use
Definition - World rank and map
arable land: 1.64%
permanent crops: 0.27%
other: 98.09% (2005)
Irrigated land
Definition
130 sq km (2002)
Total renewable water resources
Definition
0.1 cu km (1997)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
Definition
total: 0.29 cu km/yr (24%/3%/72%)
per capita: 358 cu m/yr (2000)
Natural hazards
Definition
haze, dust storms, sandstorms common
Environment - current issues
Definition
limited natural fresh water resources are increasing dependence on large-scale desalination facilities
Environment - international agreements
Definition
party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note
Definition
strategic location in central Persian Gulf near major petroleum deposits


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