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Backgrounder: Basic facts about Yemen
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10:53, June 24, 2008

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Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping will pay a visit to Yemen on June 24 to 25 at the invitation of Yemeni Vice President Abdal-rab Mansur al-Hadii.

The following are some key facts about Yemen in southwest Asia:

Bordering Saudi Arabia on the north, Oman on the east, the Red Sea on the west and the Gulf of Aden on the south, the Republic of Yemen covers an area of 555,000 square km with the capital city of Sana'a.

It has a population of 21.6 million, mostly Arabs. Arabic is the official language.

Yemen is an agricultural country with 75 percent of the population engaged in agriculture. Cotton, coffee, grain, corn, barley, soybean, sesame, tobacco leaf are Yemen's major agricultural products.

Yemen is rich in such resources as copper, iron, chrome, aluminum, gold, silver, coal, oil, natural gas and gypsum. Yemen has oil reserves standing at 6 billion barrels and 500 billion cubic meters of natural gas reserves.

Yemen is one of the least developed countries due to a poor economic situation. In 1995, the Yemeni government carried out economic, financial and administrative reforms.

From 1996 to 2000, the average GDP increased by 5.5 percent. In 2006, its GDP reached 19.5 billion U.S. dollars.

Yemen established diplomatic relations with China on Sept. 24, 1956. Bilateral trade volume reached 2.705 billion dollars in 2007.


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