Monarchies in Asia

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Asia has more absolute monarchs than any other continent.

National monarchies[edit]

StateTypeSuccessionIncumbentBornAgeReigns sinceDesignated heir
 Bahrainkingdomagnatic primogenitureHamad bin Isa Al Khalifa28 Jan 195064 y.6 Mar 1999
(as emir)
14 Feb 2002
(as king)
heir apparent: Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, Crown Prince of Bahrain (eldest son)
 Bhutankingdommale primogenitureJigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck21 Feb 198034 y.14 Dec 2006heir presumptive: Prince Jigyel Ugyen Wangchuck (younger brother)
 Bruneisultanateagnatic primogenitureHassanal Bolkiah15 Jul 194668 y.4 Oct 1967heir apparent: Al-Muhtadee Billah, Crown Prince of Brunei (eldest son)
 Cambodiakingdomelective monarchy with hereditary agnatic primogenitureNorodom Sihamoni14 May 195361 y.14 Oct 2004None; appointed by the Royal Council of the Throne within the Royal Family members
 Japanempireagnatic primogenitureAkihito23 Dec 193380 y.7 Jan 1989heir apparent: Naruhito, Crown Prince of Japan
(eldest son)
 Jordankingdomagnatic primogenitureAbdullah II bin Al Hussein30 Jan 196252 y.7 Feb 1999heir apparent: Hussein bin Al Abdullah, Crown Prince of Jordan (eldest son)
 Kuwaitemirateelective monarchy with hereditary agnatic primogenitureSabah IV Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah16 Jun 192985 y.29 Jan 2006heir presumptive: Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Crown Prince of Kuwait (younger half-brother; appointed by the reigning emir within the Royal Family members)
 Malaysiakingdomelective monarchyAbdul Halim, Sultan of Kedah28 November 192786 y.13 December 2011None; appointed by the Conference of Rulers every five years or after the king's death
 Omansultanateagnatic primogenitureQaboos bin Said al Said18 Nov 194074 y.23 Jul 1970None; the king has no children so the heir will be appointed by the Royal Family members after the king's death, if there is no consensus the king's preference (expressed in an official sealed letter) will prevail
 Qataremirateagnatic primogenitureTamim bin Hamad Al Thani3 June 198034 y.25 June 2013None; will be appointed by the reigning emir within the Royal Family members
 Saudi Arabiakingdomagnatic SeniorityAbdullah bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud1 Aug 192490 y.1 Aug 2005Heir apparent: Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia (younger half-brother; appointed by consensus within the Royal Family members)
 Thailandkingdommale primogenitureBhumibol Adulyadej Rama IX5 Dec 192786 y.9 Jun 1946Heir apparent: Maha Vajiralongkorn, Crown Prince of Thailand (only son)
 United Arab Emirateskingdomagnatic primogenitureKhalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Emir of Abu Dhabi25 Jan 194866 y.3 Nov 2004None; appointed by the seven emirs of UAE (normally the Emir of Abu Dhabi is always appointed as President, while the Emir of Dubai is always appointed as Prime Minister


Constituent monarchies[edit]

United Arab Emirates[edit]

The United Arab Emirates consists of seven emirates that are all ruled by absolute monarchs. The President of the United Arab Emirates is an office held by the ruler of Abu Dhabi and the office of Prime Minister is held by the ruler of Dubai. The seven Emirates of the UAE are the;


Note: Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi of Ajman, Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla of Umm al-Quwain, Saqr bin Mohammad al-Qassimi of Ras al-Khaimah, and Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi of Fujairah are not pictured.


Malaysia, where the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (Supreme Head of State) is elected to a five-year term. Nine hereditary rulers from the Malay States form a Council of Rulers who will determine the next Agong via a secret ballot. The position has to date, been de facto rotated through the State rulers, originally based on seniority. The nine Malay States are the;

The monarchy of Negeri Sembilan is itself elective.

Other subnational[edit]

 Indonesia is a republic, however several provinces or regencies preserves their own monarchy, although only Special Region of Yogyakarta that retain actual administrative authority, the rest only holds cultural significance.

See also[edit]