Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said Al Said has a fortune of $700 million as of 2014, according to Forbes list. He has led successful diversification of economy with grand objective of reducing the oil sector’s hefty 40% contribution to GDP to 9% by 2020. Promoting gas and tourism industries; government also owns stake in the Wave, a $2.5 billion mixed-use beachfront development in country’s capital, Muscat.
Born in Salalah in Dhofar on 18 November 1940, Qaboos atteneded primary and secondary school in India, and later joined the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. After graduation he served in the British Army stationed in Germany for a year.
He became Sultan in 1970 after he successfully overthrow his father, Said bin Taimur, in a palace coup. Since taking the throne he has increased Oman’s international relations, allowed free media, established high schools, built highways, opened hotels and modern shopping malls and spends a substantial part of the nation’s oil revenues on health care and education.
A passionate classical music, the Sultan has a 120 member orchestra which also play abroad, widely known in the Middle East. He was married to his cousin, Kamila and they divorced in 1979.