Muscat is the capital and most populated city in Oman. It is the seat of the Governorate of Muscat. According to the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI), the total population of Muscat Governorate was 1.72 million as of September 2022. The metropolitan area spans approximately 3500 km2 and includes six provinces called wilayats, making it the largest city in the Arabian Peninsula by area. Known since the early 1st century AD as an important trading port between the west and the east, Muscat was ruled by various indigenous tribes as well as foreign powers such as the Persians, the Portuguese Empire and the Ottoman Empire at various points in its history. A regional military power in the 18th century, Muscat's influence extended as far as East Africa and Zanzibar. As an important port-town in the Gulf of Oman, Muscat attracted foreign tradesmen and settlers such as the Persians, Balochs and Sindhis. Since the accession of Qaboos bin Said as Sultan of Oman in 1970, Muscat has experienced rapid infrastructural development that has led to the growth of a vibrant economy and a multi-ethnic society. Muscat is termed as a Beta - Global City by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network.