CIA World Fact Book, 2004/Oman

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Oman-CIA WFB Map (2004).png
Introduction Oman
Background: In 1970, QABOOS bin Said Al Said ousted his father and has ruled as sultan ever since. His extensive modernization program has opened the country to the outside world and has preserved a long-standing political and military relationship with the UK. Oman's moderate, independent foreign policy has sought to maintain good relations with all Middle Eastern countries.
Geography Oman
Location: Middle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Persian Gulf, between Yemen and UAE
Geographic coordinates: 21 00 N, 57 00 E
Map references: Middle East
Area: total: 212,460 sq km
water: 0 sq km
land: 212,460 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Kansas
Land boundaries: total: 1,374 km
border countries: Saudi Arabia 676 km, UAE 410 km, Yemen 288 km
Coastline: 2,092 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 12 nm
contiguous zone: 24 nm
exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Climate: dry desert; hot, humid along coast; hot, dry interior; strong southwest summer monsoon (May to September) in far south
Terrain: central desert plain, rugged mountains in north and south
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Arabian Sea 0 m
highest point: Jabal Shams 2,980 m
Natural resources: petroleum, copper, asbestos, some marble, limestone, chromium, gypsum, natural gas
Land use: arable land: 0.12%
permanent crops: 0.14%
other: 99.74% (2001)
Irrigated land: 620 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards: summer winds often raise large sandstorms and dust storms in interior; periodic droughts
Environment - current issues: rising soil salinity; beach pollution from oil spills; very limited natural fresh water resources
Environment - international agreements: party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note: strategic location on Musandam Peninsula adjacent to Strait of Hormuz, a vital transit point for world crude oil
People Oman
Population: 2,903,165
note: includes 577,293 non-nationals (July 2004 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 42.4% (male 628,078; female 603,829)
15-64 years: 55.1% (male 955,765; female 643,687)
65 years and over: 2.5% (male 38,761; female 33,045) (2004 est.)
Median age: total: 19.3 years
male: 22.1 years
female: 16.4 years (2004 est.)
Population growth rate: 3.35% (2004 est.)
Birth rate: 37.12 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Death rate: 3.91 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Net migration rate: 0.28 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.49 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.17 male(s)/female
total population: 1.27 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 20.26 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 17.19 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
male: 23.18 deaths/1,000 live births
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 72.85 years
male: 70.66 years
female: 75.16 years (2004 est.)
Total fertility rate: 5.9 children born/woman (2004 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 1,300 (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths: less than 200 (2003 est.)
Nationality: noun: Omani(s)
adjective: Omani
Ethnic groups: Arab, Baluchi, South Asian (Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Bangladeshi), African
Religions: Ibadhi Muslim 75%, Sunni Muslim, Shi'a Muslim, Hindu
Languages: Arabic (official), English, Baluchi, Urdu, Indian dialects
Literacy: definition: NA
total population: 75.8%
male: 83.1%
female: 67.2% (2003 est.)
Government Oman
Country name: conventional long form: Sultanate of Oman
conventional short form: Oman
local long form: Saltanat Uman
former: Muscat and Oman
local short form: Uman
Government type: monarchy
Capital: Muscat
Administrative divisions: 5 regions (manaatiq, singular - mintaqat) and 3 governorates* (muhaafazaat, singular - muhaafaza) Ad Dakhiliyah, Al Batinah, Al Wusta, Ash Sharqiyah, Az Zahirah, Masqat*, Musandam*, Zufar*
Independence: 1650 (expulsion of the Portuguese)
National holiday: Birthday of Sultan QABOOS, 18 November (1940)
Constitution: none; note - on 6 November 1996, Sultan QABOOS issued a royal decree promulgating a basic law considered by the government to be a constitution which, among other things, clarifies the royal succession, provides for a prime minister, bars ministers from holding interests in companies doing business with the government, establishes a bicameral legislature, and guarantees basic civil liberties for Omani citizens
Legal system: based on English common law and Islamic law; ultimate appeal to the monarch; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage: in Oman's most recent Majlis al-Shura elections in 2003, suffrage was universal for all Omanis over age 21 except for members of the military and security forces; the next Majlis al-Shura elections are scheduled for 2007
Executive branch: chief of state: Sultan and Prime Minister QABOOS bin Said Al Said (since 23 July 1970); note - the monarch is both the chief of state and head of government
head of government: Sultan and Prime Minister QABOOS bin Said Al Said (since 23 July 1970); note - the monarch is both the chief of state and head of government
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the monarch
elections: none; the monarch is hereditary
Legislative branch: bicameral Majlis Oman consists of an upper chamber or Majlis al-Dawla (58 seats; members appointed by the monarch; has advisory powers only) and a lower chamber or Majlis al-Shura (83 seats; members elected by universal suffrage for four-year term; body has some limited power to propose legislation, but otherwise has only advisory powers)
elections: last held 4 October 2003 (next to be held NA 2007)
election results: NA
Judicial branch: Supreme Court
note: the nascent civil court system, administered by region, has judges who practice secular and Sharia (Islamic) law
Political parties and leaders: none
Political pressure groups and leaders: none
International organization participation: ABEDA, AFESD, AMF, FAO, G-77, GCC, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt (signatory), IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, LAS, MIGA, NAM, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, WToO
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Muhammad bin Ali bin Thani al-KHUSSAIBY
chancery: 2535 Belmont Road, NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 387-1980 through 1981, 1988
FAX: [1] (202) 745-4933
Diplomatic representation from the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Richard Lewis BALTIMORE III
embassy: Jameat A'Duwal Al Arabiya Street, Al Khuwair area, Muscat
mailing address: P. O. Box 202, P.C. 115, Madinat Al-Sultan Qaboos, Muscat
telephone: [968] 24-698989
FAX: [968] 24-699771
Flag description: three horizontal bands of white, red, and green of equal width with a broad, vertical, red band on the hoist side; the national emblem (a khanjar dagger in its sheath superimposed on two crossed swords in scabbards) in white is centered near the top of the vertical band
Economy Oman
Economy - overview: Oman is a small, well-off middle Eastern economy with large oil and gas resources, a substantial trade surplus, and low inflation. The government is moving ahead with privatization of its utilities, the development of a body of commercial law to facilitate foreign investment, and increased budgetary outlays. Oman continues to liberalize its markets and joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) in November 2000. In order to reduce unemployment and limit dependence on foreign countries, the government is encouraging the replacement of expatriate workers with local people, i.e., the process of Omanization. Training in information technology, business management, and English support this objective. Industrial development plans focus on gas resources.
GDP: purchasing power parity - $36.7 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 1.1% (2003 est.)
GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $13,100 (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 3.1%
industry: 42.1%
services: 54.8% (2003 est.)
Investment (gross fixed): 13% of GDP (2003)
Population below poverty line: NA
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA
highest 10%: NA
Inflation rate (consumer prices): -0.3% (2003 est.)
Labor force: 920,000 (2002 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture NA, industry NA, services NA
Unemployment rate: NA
Budget: revenues: $8.218 billion
expenditures: $7.766 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2003 est.)
Public debt: 15.6% of GDP (2003)
Agriculture - products: dates, limes, bananas, alfalfa, vegetables; camels, cattle; fish
Industries: crude oil production and refining, natural gas production, construction, cement, copper
Industrial production growth rate: 0.2% (2003 est.)
Electricity - production: 9.274 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - consumption: 8.625 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production: 963,800 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption: 53,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports: NA (2001)
Oil - imports: NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves: 5.703 billion bbl (1 January 2002)
Natural gas - production: 13.77 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 6.34 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 7.43 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 846.4 billion cu m (1 January 2002)
Current account balance: $2.173 billion (2003)
Exports: $11.7 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Exports - commodities: petroleum, reexports, fish, metals, textiles
Exports - partners: South Korea 18.7%, China 18.5%, Japan 16.2%, Thailand 12.2%, UAE 7.8%, Iran 4.1% (2003)
Imports: $5.659 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Imports - commodities: machinery and transport equipment, manufactured goods, food, livestock, lubricants
Imports - partners: UAE 21.6%, Japan 17.1%, US 6.2%, UK 5.6%, Germany 4.4%, India 4.4% (2003)
Reserves of foreign exchange & gold: $3.594 billion (2003)
Debt - external: $5.973 billion (2003 est.)
Economic aid - recipient: $76.4 million (1995)
Currency: Omani rial (OMR)
Currency code: OMR
Exchange rates: Omani rials per US dollar - 0.3845 (2003), 0.3845 (2002), 0.3845 (2001), 0.3845 (2000), 0.3845 (1999)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Communications Oman
Telephones - main lines in use: 233,900 (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular: 464,900 (2002)
Telephone system: general assessment: modern system consisting of open-wire, microwave, and radiotelephone communication stations; limited coaxial cable
domestic: open-wire, microwave, radiotelephone communications, and a domestic satellite system with 8 earth stations
international: country code - 968; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) and 1 Arabsat
Radio broadcast stations: AM 3, FM 9, shortwave 2 (1999)
Radios: 1.4 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations: 13 (plus 25 low-power repeaters) (1999)
Televisions: 1.6 million (1997)
Internet country code: .om
Internet hosts: 726 (2003)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)
Internet users: 180,000 (2002)
Transportation Oman
Highways: total: 34,965 km
paved: 9,673 km (including 550 km of expressways)
unpaved: 25,292 km (2001)
Pipelines: gas 3,754 km; oil 3,212 km (2004)
Ports and harbors: Matrah, Mina' al Fahl, Mina' Raysut
Merchant marine: total: 2 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 15,430 GRT/6,360 DWT
by type: passenger 2
registered in other countries: 1 (2004 est.)
Airports: 135 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 6
over 3,047 m: 4
2,438 to 3,047 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 130
914 to 1,523 m: 34
under 914 m: 35 (2004 est.)
1,524 to 2,437 m: 52
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 7
Heliports: 1 (2003 est.)
Military Oman
Military branches: Royal Omani Armed Forces: Army, Navy, Air Force
Military manpower - military age and obligation: 18 years of age for voluntary military service (2001)
Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49: 796,792 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service: males age 15-49: 443,006 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually: males: 31,274 (2004 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure: $242.07 million (2003)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 11.4% (2003)
This page was last updated on 1 January 2003

This is a snapshot of the CIA World Fact Book as it existed on 26 March 2005