United Arab Emirates’s Country Profile
Official country name: United Arab Emirates
Area: 32,000 sq miles (82,880 sq km)
Population: 4.4 million (2007 est.). About four-fifth of the UAE’s population is foreign.
Median age: 30.1
Ethnic Groups: Emirati Arabs, 19 percent, other Arabs and Iranians 23 percent, South Asian 50 percent, others, 8 percent, based on 1982 estimates. GDP and GDP per capita: $163.1 billion and $32,985 (2006 estimates)
Read a complete country profile of the United Arab Emirates
United Arab Emirates’s Olympic History
First time represented at Summer Olympics: 1984
Gold medals won: 1
Athletes at the Beijing Olympics: 8
Number of Sports competing in at Beijing Olympics: 7
Medals at 2008 Beijing Olympics: 0
United Arab Emirates’s Olympic Playbook
The United Arab Emirates is not exactly a country. It’s more like a gathering if city states that occasionally puts up a big tent stitched by the initials UAE. The seven emirates that form the UAE compete with each other as if every day were an Olympiad, with just a few sports: making money, making a buzz, making more money. But the Arabs of the UAE know how to have fun, too. They’re nothing like their tightly-strung Saudi neighbors to the west—they don’t mind the occasional bikini on their beaches, the don’t ban religions that diverge from Islam, and they generally let their woman get involved in the Emirates’ life: the country’s Olympic delegation of seven includes 2 women—better than Saudi Arabia, for example, which bans women from participating not only in the Olympics but in any public sport, period.
The UAE has been participating in the Olympics only since 1984 (Los Angeles was its debut), but in Athens in 2004 Ahmed Almaktoum became the country’s first medalist, shooting up to the top with a gold in double trap (a shooting event). He aims to repeat, obviously, but is unlikely to, of his own admission. “I’ll go and defend the gold I won in Athens, just to ensure that the UAE flag is unfurled for a second time,” Shaikh Ahmad told Gulf News. "I admit that I have not been through the best preparations for such an important event."
United Arab Emirates’s Athletes at the 2008 Beijing Olympics
Saeed Rashed Al Qubaisi
Adil Khalid Mohammad
Obaid Ahmed Aljesmi
Sheikha Maitha Almaktoum
Track & Field/Athletics
Omar Juma Alsalfa