United Arab Emirates

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Background

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a country of 4.6 million people in the Middle East, located on the southern coast of the Persian Gulf and adjacent to Saudi Arabia and Oman. The UAE is actually a confederation of seven small kingdoms, including Dubai and Abu Dhabi. A previously a classic rentier state that used to primary depend on revenues from Oil exports , but however the country has taken large steps in economic diversification. The emirate of Dubai has become the financial capital of the middle east although it has minimal oil resources .The UAE is a member of OPEC.

The country has been witnessing a boom since the late 1990s, although Dubai was hit particularly hard by the present recession. Years of rapid expansion have highlighted human rights violations regarding its largely foreign work force . (Source: Bush fawns over the U.A.E.).

US Military Bases

The U.S. Military has few bases in the UAE. Two of the most important are Al Dhafra air base and Jebel Ali port. Al Dhafra supports fighters and aerial refueling aircraft, in addition to occassional U-2 and Global Hawk reconnaissance flights. Meanwhile, the Navy makes about 200 calls a year at Jebel Ali port. The UAE is considered as one one of the main allies in the war against terrorism , however some of the hijackers involved in September 11 attacks held UAE citizenship.

Controversies

  • On March 2, 2006, Dubai International Capital LLC announced that it plans to buy Doncasters Group Ltd., a British company with plants in Georgia and Connecticut that make precision parts used in engines for military aircraft and tanks. This time the CFIUS is conducting a full 45-day review.
  • Dubai Ports World, a UAE state-owned company, made an offer to run some of the terminals in the ports of New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia. On February 20, 2006, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), chaired by Treasury Secretary Snow, approved the sale after a cursory 30-day review. However, a bi-partisan group of seven members of Congress wrote to the Secretary demanding a full 45-day review to determine whether this sale would adversely effect national security. The next day, Bush said that he would veto any legislation to block the sale. On January 24th, DP World announced that one of its senior executives, Dave Sanborn, has been nominated by US President George W. Bush to serve as Maritime Administrator a key transportation appointment reporting directly to Norman Mineta the United States Secretary of Transportation.


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