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Umm Al Quwain

Umm Al Quwain


H. H. Sheikh Saud bin Rashid Bin Ahmed Al Mualla is the Ruler of Umm Al Quwain. He was born on 1 October 1952. He became the Ruler and a member of the Supreme Council after the demise of his father Sheikh Rashid bin Ahmad Al Mualla on 2 January 2009. Sheikh Saud received his early education in Umm Al Quwain and his high school education in Lebanon, after which he completed his higher education in Economics from the University of Cairo in 1974.


Archaeological evidences indicate its ties with the ancient Mesopotamia and the Umm Al Nar civilisations. Alakaab island, dating back to the Neolithic period was used for slaughtering dugongs. The modern history of Umm Al Quwain began around 200 years ago when the Al Ali tribe moved from Seniah island to its present location due to scarce water resources. In 1775, Sheikh Majed Al Mualla, founder of the ruling Al Mualla lineage of the Al Ali tribe, established an independent Sheikhdom in Umm Al Quwain.

How it was named

The name literally means ‘the mother of two powers' referring to its two traditional economic and agricultural powers that the emirate has historically possessed: the sea and the land. However, the other theory is that the name is inspired from Qawn, which is a direct reference to iron.


Umm Al Quwain is the second smallest and the least populated emirate. It covers an area of approximately 77 sq km which is equivalent to 1 per cent of the UAE's area. It is situated between Sharjah to the southwest and Ras Al Khaimah to the northeast. The city of Umm Al Quwain is built on a narrow peninsula called Khor Al Bidiyah.

Nature and environment

The emirate has rich coastal mangroves on the coast of Arabian Gulf and many islands that lie to the east of the mainland. The biggest island, Al Seniah, is home to Arabian gazelles, falcons and turtles. Falaj Al Mualla is the agricultural area of the emirate located 50 km south of Umm Al Quwain.


Fishing is a key contributor to the economy of Umm Al Quwain. The emirate exports seafood throughout Europe and Middle East. The first poultry farm in the UAE was established in Falaj Al Mualla. It is considered a key supplier of poultry and dairy products to the local market. The construction of Ahmed Bin Rashid Port and the Free Trade Zone signifies the emirate's plans towards expanding its commercial and investment base.


Umm Al Quwain Fort, which was home to the Ruler of the emirate, guarded the entrance to the old town. Later it became a museum. Dreamland Aqua Park, a water park and a recreational resort is the other landmark in the emirate.


The population of UAE nationals mid-2010 was 17,482 comprising 8,671 males and 8,811 females. This is the only emirate where females outnumber males. Useful links:

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