Oman is a slender, long piece of flat land that juts out from the southeast tip of the Arabian Peninsula and into the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman. The sultanate is 1,700 kilometers long and is bordered by the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. While its borders with the Emirates and Yemen are clear, its frontier with Saudi Arabia is yet to be defined. All of its eastern side is coastline.
Oman - Facts and Figures
- Official name is Sultanate of Oman.
- Oman’s terrain is mostly flat desert plain with rugged mountains in the north and south.
- Climate is dry desert, being hot and humid in coastal areas while hot and dry in the interior and far south areas.
- Its land boundaries total 1,374 kilometers while its coastline is 2,092 kilometers.
- Area: 212,460 sq km, all of it land. It is slightly smaller than Kansas.
- Islam arrived in Oman around the seven century AD. The country was occupied by Portugal from 1508 to 1648 before being seized the Ottomans, who were ousted in 1741 by Ahmad ibn Sa’id.
- Population is around 3.1 million. Races include Arab, Baluchi, African, Indian, Pakistani and Sri Lankan.
- Official Language is Arabic. English, Baluchi, Urdu and several Indian dialects are also spoken.
- Islam is the majority religion with Ibadhi’s comprising 75% and Sunnis, Shiites and Hindus the rest.
- Capital city is Muscat.
- Oman’s major exports include petroleum, fish, metals and textiles. Its major natural resources are petroleum, copper, asbestos, marble, limestone, chromium, gypsum and natural gas.
- The local currency is the Omani rial.
- Agricultural products are dates, lime, bananas, alfalfa, vegetables, camels, cattle and fish.
- Major trading partners include China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Italy, Germany and the United States.
- Government is an absolute monarchy.