The State of Qatar is a sovereign and independent state in the Middle East, occupying a peninsula that juts into the Arabian Gulf. Since its complete independence from Britain in 1971, Qatar has emerged as one of the world’s most important producers of oil and gas. It is an Islamic State whose laws and customs follow the Islamic tradition. Since 2013, the country has been governed by HH Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani.
Location and geography
The State of Qatar is a peninsula located amid the western coast of the Arabian Gulf. The peninsular is approximately 100km across and extends 200km into the Gulf. Qatar includes several islands the largest of which are, Halul, Shraouh and Al-Asshat.. shares its southern border with Saudi Arabia and a maritime border Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Iran.
The land mainly consists of 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.
Qatar occupies an area of 11,521 square kilometers.
Qatar has a population of approximately 2,5 million.
Qatar’s capital city is Doha (in Arabic, ad-Dawḥa, which means ‘the big tree’).
Doha (capital), Al-Wakrah, Al-Khor, Dukhan, Al-Shamal, Msaieed, Ras Lafan and others.
Islam is the official religion of the State of Qatar, and the Islamic Law (Sharia) shall be the principal source of its legislation.
Since the mid-1800s, 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.
Arabic is the official language of the country, though English is widely spoken.
Qatar has a desert climate with hot summers, warm winters and scarce rainfall.
Qatari Riyal (1 Riyal = 100 Dirhams).
The Riyal is pegged to the US Dollar ($US 1 = QAR 3.65).
Qatar National Day is held on 18th December every year in celebration and commemoration of Sheikh Jassim Bin Mohammad Al-Thani, the founder of the State of Qatar.
Official Working Hours
- Ministries and Government Entities: from 7am to 2 pm
- Private Companies and Organisations: from 8am to 12pm and from 4pm to 8pm
- Banks: from 7:30am to 1pm
- Fridays and Saturdays are official days off in Qatar
- Qatar National Day: December 18 (annually)
- National Sport Day on Tuesday of the second week of February (annually)
- The holy Eid Al-Fitr
- The holy Eid Al-Adha