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Qatar

Map of Qatar
Name: Qatar
Continent: Asia
Population: 793,000
Religion: Muslim 95%

Qatar is an ancient land that was populated by the 5th or 6th centuries A.D. and is referenced by Arab historians since the 7th century. Qatar welcomed Islam in the middle of the 600s.

As with other gulf countries, Qatar is ruled by a single family, whose leading member rules as amir. Qatar has been ruled by the Al Thani family since the mid-1800s.

Oil was discovered in Qatar in 1939 and exports began in 1949. Oil revenues have given Qatar a substantial income and a high standard of living. Oil accounts for almost a third of GDP, most of export earnings, and two thirds of government revenues. Proved oil reserves of abour 3.5 billion barrels should ensure continued output at current levels for over twenty years. Qatar's proven reserves of natural gas are third largest in the world. Export of natural gas is becoming increasingly important. Long-term goals feature the development of off-shore reserves and the diversification of the economy.

Qatar became independent on September 3, 1971. In 1981, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, and the UAE formed the Gulf Cooperation Council. The goal of the GCC has been to provide for regional defense and to coordinate policy on trade and economic issues.

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. He was overthrown by his son, the current Amir Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, in a bloodless coup in 1995.

 

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THESE ARE ARCHIVED PAGES OF THE OLD EHISTORY SITE
These pages are not actively maintained and may have errors in content and functionality