I chose to compare the United Arab Emirates to Panama because both countries are experiencing significant economic growth even though many countries are experiencing problems with the economy. Both countries are located in close proximity to important regional waterways. The United Arab Emirates has the Straits of Hormuz, while Panama has the Panama Canal. The Strait of Hormuz is a waterway between the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf. It is bordered by Iran, United Arab Emirates, and Oman Musandam Peninsula. About 20% of all the world’s petroleum passes through the Strait of Hormuz. At its narrowest, it is 21 nautical miles wide. The Strait is used to import and export items into the countries that border the strait, including the United Arab Emirates. The Panama Canal is a 48 mile Canal that connects the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. The Canal is located on the Isthmus of Panama making it a perfect place for the Canal. The Canal is used to decrease the amount of transportation time for ships traveling throughout the area. There are locks at each end that lift ships up to the Gatun Lake, a lake made for the canal. It is 85 feet above sea level. It takes a ship an average of 8-10 hours to travel through the Panama Canal. Both countries generate billions of dollars through the waterways, although the United Arab Emirates generates more money than Panama.
The principal commercial centers in Panama are Panama City and Colon. Both border on the Panama Canal. The principal commercial centers in the United Arab Emirates are Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Both of these commercial centers are on the Persian Gulf and just to the east of the Strait of Hormuz. Ships leaving these commercial centers must pass through the Strait of Hormuz to travel to other parts of the region and other countries of the world.
My hypothesis is that the business generated from the regional waterways accounts for much of the growth of the economies in each of the countries. The United Arab Emirates has experienced significant economic growth over the past eight years. Since 2008, the economy of the United Arab Emirates has been steadily increasing. In 2012, the economy of the United Arab Emirates grew 4.4%. Panama also is experiencing a period of significant economic growth. Over the past year, the economy of Panama grew 10%, putting Panama as one of the fastest growing economies in the Latin American as well as in the world. I believe the reason for such significant economic growth in both countries is mainly due to import/export of goods through the waterways located by each country. United Arab Emirates had imports totaling 273.5 billion dollars and exports totaling 314 billion in 2012. Panama’s imported goods totaled 26.61 billion dollars and exported goods totaled 18.87 billion dollars in 2012.
The top five products exported from the United Arab Emirates are crude petroleum, refined petroleum, gold, petroleum gas, and raw aluminum. The...