Qatar, spread over 11,521 square kilometers, is a sovereign and independent state in the Middle East governed by Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani since 2013.
It is an Islamic State whose laws and customs follow the Islamic tradition. Since independence from Britain in 1971, Qatar has emerged as one of the world’s most important producers of oil and gas. Doha (in Arabic, ad-Daw?a), is the capital city of Qatar. Qatar’s major cities are Al-Wakrah, Al-Khor, Dukhan, Al-Shamal, Mesaieed, and Ras Lafan. The country’s population as on October 3, 2016 is around 2.4 million. Qatar plays a pivotal role in the GCC, the Middle East and the world through its international policy that promotes peace and development.
Qatar is a peninsula located on the western coast of the Arabian Gulf. The country is around 100km wide and extends 200km into the Gulf. Qatar includes several islands the largest of which are, Halul, Shraouh and Al-Asshat. It shares its southern border with Saudi Arabia and a maritime border Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Iran.
The land mainly comprises a flat rocky plain, covered with a range of low limestone outcroppings in Jebel Dukhan in the west and Jebel Fuyart in the north. This plain is mostly marked by its many inland seas (Khors), bays and basins called (al-Riyadh) over the northern and middle areas that are considered to be the most fertile lands housing different natural plants.
Since the early 1900s, Qatar has grown from a poor British protectorate known for pearling into one of the world’s most important oil and gas producing countries. While there is increasing investment in non-energy sectors, oil and gas still account for more than half of the Gross Domestic Product. Due to its substantial reserves of oil and gas, the country has one of the highest incomes per capita in the world.
Science, technology and Research
Since the turn of the Millennium, Qatar has made rapid progress in science, technology, medicine, research and education. It provides a base to international researchers, scientists, educationists and the youth to assemble at various forums it organises. The goal is to discuss innovative ideas, exchange experience and find solution to the challenges the world faces today.
Peace and Charity
Qatar plays a leading role in pushing for regional peace as well as contributing substantial developmental aid to war-ravaged and impoverished countries.
A number of private charities such as Reach Out to Asia regularly fund short-term and long term educational programmes managed by institutions in Asia and other parts of the world.
Almost three fourths of Qatar’s population comprises paid foreign workers. This huge workforce of around 1.5 million remits substantial foreign exchange revenue to its respective countries. In a way, Qatar boosts the economy of the countries from where the foreign workers come.