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1. Geography
2. Political situation
3. Economy
a. Figures
4. Health
5. Education
a. Universities
6. Media
7. Demographics
8. Religions
a. Freedom
9. Peoples
10. Languages
11. History
12. Cities and Towns

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Index / Economy /
Open map of BahrainFlag of BahrainBahrain /

Bahraini 1 dinar note
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Key figures
GDP per capita
World average: +260%.
MENA rank: 4 of 23.
US$26.9 billion.
MENA rank: 20 of 23.
List of figuresAll other figures
5.1 points of 10 max.
World rank: 46 of 180.
MENA rank: 5 of 21.
Investment friendly
World rank: 18 of 181.
MENA rank: 2 of 21.
Economic freedom
74.8 points of 100 max.
World rank: 16 of 179.
MENA rank: 1 of 19.
Value of Currency
Fixed exchange rate:
US$1= 0.3760 Bahraini dinars
As of 2008, this still applies.

Bahraini 1/2 dinar note

Bahraini 5 dinar note

Bahraini 10 dinar note

Bahraini 20 dinar note

Mainly because of its small population and small size, Bahrain has only a minor importance in international economy. The economy is heavily dependent on oil, but the government is looking for new sources of income.
The relatively high living standard of Bahrain is based upon oil revenues, oil being discovered in 1931. In the 1980's, however, revenues started to decline. Some sources believe that oil resources may be depleted as early as 2010.
Currently, bold efforts are applied toward making the emirate a commercial centre, in which the location of the islands is central. Attention is being paid to their central location within the Persian Gulf, in between Western and Eastern airline destinations — as well as the proximity to Saudi Arabia with a causeway opened in 1986 made Bahrain into a centre for leisure and pleasure for Saudis).
First and foremost of the industries of Bahrain is the large oil refinery at the island of Sitra which processes local oil as well as oil from Saudi Arabia transported through pipe lines. Income from this refinery is already more important than the country's own oil production. The country has also a large aluminum smelter, exploiting natural gas for electricity. Other industries are small scale, but a dry dock for supertankers brings in important revenues. Bahrain also has become a major regional banking and communications center, as well as a centre for insurance and financing.
Agriculture is fairly small, but springs in the northern parts of the main island provide good conditions for food production. A large portion of the consumed foodstuffs are produced in Bahrain. The production of dates is at the level of 35 kg/inhabitant. Fishing brings in 11 kg/inhabitant.
The people of Bahrain enjoy high living standards, even if there are considerable differences between social groups. Housing and transportation is subsidized by the state. The level of telephones is 1 to every 4 inhabitants, 2 radios to every 5 inhabitants, 1 TV-set to every 3 inhabitants.

By Tore Kjeilen