Petroleum Development Limited
The modern United Arab Emirates is a federal union of seven emirates with certain autonomy but still formally united into a single state. This area has a rich and long history. In the book United Arab Emirates, it is stated that human beings have had a rich and varied history in the Middle East for thousands of years (McCoy, 2013, p. 58). At the initial stage of its history, this territory was controlled by Oman. However, in the XV century, Europeans became interested in these lands. At first, the Portuguese came here.
They managed to establish control over some local areas. However, later, the United Kingdom tried to monopolize the local ports and trade on the territory. In 1820, the British forced the emirs and sheikhs of seven principalities to sign a contract. In fact, it marked the beginning of the British protectorate. However, in 1920, the struggle for independence began in Oman. Meanwhile, there was an event that actually became a turning point in the fate of all countries in the Persian Gulf huge oil deposits were discovered. This event marked the future history of the region and the division of boundaries began. The purpose of the paper is to examine the letter found in the Qatar National Library Digital Archives about the petroleum development and division of territories.
The letter was sent to H. B. Ms Political Agent, Bahrain, and dated to April 30, 1947 (File 38/17). The author of the letter is a manager of Petroleum Development Ltd. It can be considered an informative letter about the possible division of territories and the future of oil deposits in Abu-Dhabi and Dubai. The letter does not contain any mistakes. As a result, it can be regarded as accurate. This letter not only include news or facts, but it also has certain suggestions about territory divisions and oil deposits. It consists of several points. Every point addresses a certain problematic issue.
Summary of the Letter
As it was already mentioned, the letter was written in 1947. Several years earlier, Britain began to develop oil fields in Ras Al Khaimah, Kalbe, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, and Abu Dhabi. During World War II, Oman remained neutral. After the war, a status of sheikhdoms was raised to the Emirates (principalities). It was the time when the foundations of the future federation were established. New oil fields were discovered everywhere. Because of this, the issue of oil and territories was extremely important.
The first point of the letter is about the division of the territories. The principals insisted that it was necessary to settle the boundaries prior to drilling or other great activities. It was associated with the fact that it would show the potential location of the oil field to the sheikhs.
The second point of the letter is about tense relations between Abu-Dhabi and Dubai, the independent oil territories. At that time, the issue of these territories was disputable. The principals emphasized the need for the rapid ownership of these territories. Otherwise, the sheikhs would understand the true value of these territories. They also assumed that the future geophysical work would be in the Abu-Dhabi region. In turn, this fact would raise greater claims of Dubai.
The next point of the letter also discusses the possible division of the region. According to the principals, it was better to divide the territories. Another division might bring many disadvantages splitting the structure or the potential oil field. However, the principals highlighted that the notion potential oil field did not necessary mean the definite existence of oil, but possible.
The history of the United Arab Emirates is extremely diverse. At first, the territory completely belonged to Oman. However, with time, the situation changed and the territory was under control of Britain. The XX century is known for the findings of oil deposits in the area and the desire of numerous states to participate in its extraction. In the letter found in the Qatar National Library Digital Archives, the issue of the division of territories is discussed.
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