|- From 2007||Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani|
|- From 1971||Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani|
|- September 3, 1971||Established|
|- Total||US$ 150.2 billion|
|- Per capita||US$ 88,558|
|Federation of Arab Emirates|
The State of Qatar is a absolute monarchy in Southwest Asia.
Ruled by the Al Thani family since the mid-1800s, Qatar transformed itself from a poor British protectorate noted mainly for pearling into an independent state with significant oil and natural gas revenues. 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. His son, the current Amir HAMAD bin Khalifa Al Thani, overthrew him in a bloodless coup in 1995. In 2001, Qatar resolved its longstanding border disputes with both Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. As of 2007, oil and natural gas revenues had enabled Qatar to attain the second-highest per capita income in the world.
Despite the global financial crisis, Qatar has prospered in the last several years - in 2010 Qatar had the world's highest growth rate. Qatari authorities throughout the crisis sought to protect the local banking sector with direct investments into domestic banks. GDP rebounded in 2010 largely due to the increase in oil prices. Economic policy is focused on developing Qatar's nonassociated natural gas reserves and increasing private and foreign investment in non-energy sectors, but oil and gas still account for more than 50% of GDP, roughly 85% of export earnings, and 70% of government revenues. Oil and gas likely have made Qatar the highest per-capita income country - ahead of Liechtenstein - and the country with the lowest unemployment. Proved oil reserves of 25 billion barrels should enable continued output at current levels for 57 years. Qatar's proved reserves of natural gas exceed 25 trillion cubic meters, about 14% of the world total and third largest in the world. Qatar's successful 2022 world cup bid will likely accelerate large-scale infrastructure projects such as Qatar's metro system and the Qatar-Bahrain causeway.
- Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani (₩) (April 3, 2007 - )
- Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani (₩) (September 3, 1971 - )
- Country Studies: Qatar (Library of Congress)
- The World Factbook (CIA)
- Chiefs of State and Cabinet Members of Foreign Governments (CIA)
- U.S. Department of State
- Australian Government
- Inter-Parliamentary Union - Consultative Assembly
- BBC News Country Profile
- BBC News Time Line
- World Statesmen.org
- Psephos Election Archive