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Smallest of the seven emirates comprising the United Arab Emirates.

Ajman extends over a distance of 10 miles (about 100 square miles) between the emirates of Sharjah and Umm al-Qaywayn, and covers about 0.3 percent of the total area of the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.). The emirate is composed of three regions: the town of Ajman, which includes the commercial district; Masfut, an agricultural area in the southeastern mountainous portion of the emirate; and Manama in the eastern portion of the emirate. The population of Ajman was estimated to be 118,812 in 1995. The ruler of Ajman is Shaykh Humayd bin Rashid Al Nuʿaymi.

The Ajman economy has traditionally relied on fishing and trade. In recent years the general economic development trend in the U.A.E. has extended to Ajman as well. The emirate has attracted numerous commercial and industrial enterprises due to its proximity to the commercial centers of Dubai and Sharjah and its relatively low rents. Especially prominent additions to the economy are the Free Zone, Ajman City Centre shopping complex, and several resort hotels, including the Ajman Kempinski, which is a popular destination for European and U.A.E. resident tourists. Ajman also hosts educational institutions: the Gulf Medical College Ajman and the Ajman University College of Science and Technology.

Ajman is perhaps best known for its cultural attractions. The Ajman Museum, which opened in 1981, is set in an eighteenth-century fort. The Dhow Yard is one of the most active boatbuilding yards in the country. Al Muwayhat was discovered in 1986 and is a major archaeological site on the outskirts of the city of Ajman.

see also abu dhabi.


Camerapix, ed. Spectrum Guide to the United Arab Emirates. New York: Interlink Books, 2002.

Karen Hunt Ahmed