The Yemen Arab Republic, better known to the world as the North Yemen, is officially recognised as one of the poorest nations in the world.
GV AERIALS OF: Mountainous terrain. (3 SHOTS)
GV PAN: Apartment buildings with palm trees in foreground.
MV: Women carrying bundles on head.
CU: Facade of apartment buildings. (2 SHOTS)
SV STREET SCENES: Young children and market traders. (3 SHOTS)
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Background: The Yemen Arab Republic, better known to the world as the North Yemen, is officially recognised as one of the poorest nations in the world. It has no oil, so has not been able to share in the economic boom enjoyed by most of the Middle East. Recent finds of copper near its borders with the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen, in the south, indicate hopes for future prosperity. At present the government is staking its hopes for economic expansion on its agricultural output.
SYNOPSIS: This is a land steeped in history. It was said to be the cradle of ancient civilisations, including that of the Queen of Sheba. It was also part of the famous incense road that carried commerce to the centres of civilisation in Egypt, babylon and Greece. Today, it has problems coping with modern economic forces.
But it has one major asset. In sharp contrast to the rest of the Arabian peninsula, it has fertile land and abundant rainfall. Agriculture today, as in the past, dominated the nation's economy, providing a livelihood for 90 percent of the population. It is this resource that the government is attempting to develop. It's estimated that about 30 percent of the nation's land is cultivatable, but of that only seven percent is actually used.