DOHA, Qatar – WHERE: Qatar is a thumb of land that pokes into the Persian Gulf. Its only land border is with Saudi Arabia.
WHAT: Qatar is the world's second-largest exporter of natural gas, after Russia, and has the third-largest proven reserves of the valuable energy source, the fount of much of its vast wealth.
SIZE: Ranks just 166 in the world by area; is slightly larger than Jamaica but smaller than Puerto Rico.
POPULATION: 2.27 million, the vast majority foreigners. There are just 282,750 native Qataris, according to the government — equivalent to the population of Toledo, Ohio. Qatar's GDP per capita is a whopping $131,758 — more than double that of the United States, nearly four times that of Britain, and bettered only by the $142,564 of residents in Macau, China, according to World Bank figures.
ECONOMY: Most jobs in Qatar are done by migrant workers, largely from Asia and Africa, who number more than 1.6 million.
GOVERNMENT: Led by an unelected, British-educated emir, Sheik Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani; inherited power in 2013 from his father, the outgoing ruler.
SPORTS: Host of 2022 World Cup and world championships of track and field in 2019; bid unsuccessfully for 2016 and 2020 Olympics.