macrohistory & world report


Map of Brunei

Brunei and its neighbors in Southeast Asia

World Factbook as of November 2014: "Brunei has a small well-to-do economy that depends on revenue from natural resource extraction but encompasses a mixture of foreign and domestic entrepreneurship, government regulation, welfare measures, and village tradition. Crude oil and natural gas production account for 60% of GDP and more than 90% of exports. Per capita GDP is among the highest in Asia, and substantial income from overseas investment supplements income from domestic production. For Bruneian citizens the government provides for all medical services and free education through the university level. The government of Brunei has been emphasizing through policy and resource investments it strong desire to diversity its economy both within the oil and gas sector and to new sectors."

US State Department: "The government owns a cattle farm in Australia through which the country's beef supplies are processed. At 2,262 square miles, this ranch is larger than Brunei itself. Eggs and chickens are largely produced locally, but most of Brunei's other food needs must be imported."

Economic growth rate
2012: 2.7%
2011: 2.2%
2010: 2.6%

Unemployment rate
2010: 2.7%

Oil production
2010: 159,400 barrels per day (ranks 44th)


For a wealthy country (with 5.9 times the per capita wealth of China) Brunei has a high infant mortality and low life expectancy, a little better than China in both areas but poor compared to another, slightly less, wealthy country, Switzerland. In 2009, Brunei's health expenditures were 3% of its GDP, Switzerland's 11.3%.

Living in an urban area
2010: 76%

Density in 2005: 70 persons per square kilometer.

Net migration rate
2012: A net gain of 2.55 per 1,000 population.

Ethnic groups
2004: Malay 66.3 %, Chinese 11,2%, indigenous 3.4%, other 19.1%

2004: Muslim officially 67%, Buddhist 13%, Christian 10%, other including indigenous 10%


Southeast Asia, bordering the South China Sea and Malaysia. Equivalent to 76 by 76 kilometers or 47.5 by 47.5 miles.


,A constitutional sultanate. Rule by the same family for more than six centuries. The Sultan is both chief of state and head of government. A 21-seat legislature, members appointed by his majesty. The country has a legal system based on English common law, although Islamic shariah law supersedes this in some cases. The separate system of Islamic courts apply Sharia law in family and other matters involving Muslims.

Capital: Bandar Seri Begawan

Recent History

Became a British protectorate in 1888.

Independence from Britain: 1 January 1984.

The World Factbook

Copyright © 2009-2013 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.