Analysis and Studies - Country Analysis
Brunei: a look at the market
May 18th 2023
Brunei is a small country in South-East Asia completely surrounded by Malaysia and bathed by the South Chinese Sea. In the 19th century, Brunei became a British protectorate and achieved its independence in 1985. It is an absolute monarchy (sultanate), and it has been ruled by the same royal family for more than 600 years.
The economy of Brunei
Brunei is worldwide famous for its immense petroleum and gas reserves, which helped in shaping its economy from the 1980s ahead. Indeed, its GDP is ranked among the highest in the world.
Its economy is almost exclusively based on oil and gas, which made the citizens free from any forms of taxation. It is generally regarded as a high-income country, just like Western Europe and other South-East Asian countries, such as Singapore. Brunei has an expansive and robust welfare system, and the majority of its population is employed by the central government.
Given its vast oil reserves, the number one export of Brunei is Refined Petroleum which stands out at a staggering $3.57B. It is followed by Petroleum Gas ($3.1B), Crude Petroleum ($2.1B), Cyclic Hydrocarbons ($1.76B), and Acyclic Alcohols ($205M). The major exporting partners, are mostly its neighboring countries; indeed, it mainly exports to Singapore ($2.36B), China ($2.27B), Japan ($2.15B), Australia ($1.55B), and Malaysia ($611M).
On the other hand, the top imports of Brunei are Crude Petroleum ($4.51B), Refined Petroleum ($370M), Cars ($273M), Coal Briquettes ($128M), and Packaged Medicaments ($106M). its main countries of origin of the imports are Malaysia ($1.61B), Russia ($1.14B), Singapore ($850M), Saudi Arabia ($815M), and China ($649M).
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