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Brunei Flag

Border country: Malaysia

Capital City: Bandar Seri Begawan

Internet Links

Official Sites of Brunei

The Sultan of Brunei

The Crown Prince

The Government Of Brunei Darussalam

Prime Minister's Office, Brunei Darussalam

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Brunei E-Government

Embassy of Brunei Darussalam

Brunei Meteorological Service

Political Map of Brunei



Background:  The Sultanate of Brunei's heyday occurred between the
15th and 17th centuries, when its control extended over coastal areas
of northwest Borneo and the southern Philippines. Brunei subsequently
entered a period of decline brought on by internal strife over royal
succession, colonial expansion of European powers, and piracy. In 1888,
Brunei became a British protectorate; independence was achieved in 1984.
Brunei benefits from extensive petroleum and natural gas fields, the
source of one of the highest per capita GDPs in the less developed
countries. The same family has now ruled Brunei for over six centuries.

Geography Brunei

Location:  Southeastern Asia, bordering the South China Sea and Malaysia

Geographic coordinates:  4 30 N, 114 40 E

Map references:  Southeast Asia

Area:  total: 5,770 sq km water: 500 sq km land: 5,270 sq km

Area - comparative:  slightly smaller than Delaware

Land boundaries:  total: 381 km border countries: Malaysia 381 km

Coastline:  161 km

Maritime claims:  exclusive economic zone: 200 NM or to median line
territorial sea: 12 NM

Climate:  tropical; hot, humid, rainy

Terrain:  flat coastal plain rises to mountains in east; hilly lowland
in west

Elevation extremes:  lowest point: South China Sea 0 m highest point:
Bukit Pagon 1,850 m

Natural resources:  petroleum, natural gas, timber

Land use:  arable land: 1% permanent crops: 1% other: 98% (1998 est.)

Irrigated land:  10 sq km (1998 est.)

Natural hazards:  typhoons, earthquakes, and severe flooding are very rare

Environment - current issues:  seasonal smoke/haze resulting from forest
fires in Indonesia

Environment - international agreements:  party to: Endangered Species,
Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution signed, but not
ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note:  close to vital sea lanes through South China Sea
linking Indian and Pacific Oceans; two parts physically separated by
Malaysia; almost an enclave of Malaysia

People Brunei

Population:  350,898 (July 2002 est.)

Age structure:  0-14 years: 30.2% (male 54,038; female 51,833) 15-64
years: 67% (male 125,051; female 110,257) 65 years and over: 2.8%
(male 4,609; female 5,110) (2002 est.)

Population growth rate:  2.06% (2002 est.)

Birth rate:  20.06 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Death rate:  3.38 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Net migration rate:  3.91 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)

Sex ratio:  at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.04
male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.13 male(s)/female 65 years and over:
0.9 male(s)/female total population: 1.1 male(s)/female (2002 est.)

Infant mortality rate:  13.95 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:   76.56 years (2002 est.)  male: Total fertility
rate:  2.4 children born/woman (2002 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:  0.2% (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:  less than 100 (1999 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths:  NA

Nationality:  noun: Bruneian(s) adjective: Bruneian

Ethnic groups:  Malay 67%, Chinese 15%, indigenous 6%, other 12%

Religions:  Muslim (official) 67%, Buddhist 13%, Christian 10%, indigenous
beliefs and other 10%

Languages:  Malay (official), English, Chinese

Literacy:  definition: age 15 and over can read and write total
population: 88.2% male: 92.6% female: 83.4% (1995 est.)

Government Brunei

Country name:  conventional long form: Negara Brunei Darussalam
conventional short form: Brunei

Government type:  constitutional sultanate

Capital:  Bandar Seri Begawan

Administrative divisions:  4 districts (daerah-daerah, singular - daerah);
Belait, Brunei and Muara, Temburong, Tutong

Independence:  1 January 1984 (from UK)

National holiday:  National Day, 23 February (1984); note - 1 January
1984 was the date of independence from the UK, 23 February 1984 was the
date of independence from British protection

Constitution:  29 September 1959 (some provisions suspended under a
State of Emergency since December 1962, others since independence on 1
January 1984)

Legal system:  based on English common law; for Muslims, Islamic Shari'a
law supersedes civil law in a number of areas

Suffrage:  none

Executive branch:  chief of state: Sultan and Prime Minister Sir
HASSANAL Bolkiah (since 5 October 1967); note - the monarch is both
the chief of state and head of government head of government: Sultan
and Prime Minister Sir HASSANAL Bolkiah (since 5 October 1967); note -
the monarch is both the chief of state and head of government cabinet:
Council of Cabinet Ministers appointed and presided over by the monarch;
deals with executive matters; note - there is also a Religious Council
(members appointed by the monarch) that advises on religious matters,
a Privy Council (members appointed by the monarch) that deals with
constitutional matters, and the Council of Succession (members appointed
by the monarch) that determines the succession to the throne if the
need arises elections: Legislative branch:  unicameral Legislative
Council or Majlis Masyuarat Megeri (a privy council that serves only in
a consultative capacity; NA seats; members
 last held in March 1962 note:  monarch; an elected Legislative Council
 is being considered as part of
constitutional reform, but elections are unlikely for several years

Judicial branch:  Supreme Court (chief justice and judges are sworn in
by the monarch for three-year terms)

Political parties and leaders:  Brunei Solidarity National Party or
PPKB in Malay [Haji Mohd HATTA bin Haji Zainal Abidin, president]; the
PPKB is the only legal political party in Brunei; it was registered in
1985, but became largely inactive after 1988, it was revived in 1995
and again in 1998; it has less than 200 registered party members; other
parties include Brunei People's Party or PRB (banned in 1962) and Brunei
National Democratic Party (registered in May 1965, deregistered by the
Brunei Government in 1988)

Political pressure groups and leaders:  NA

International organization participation:  APEC, ARF, ASEAN, C, CCC,
ISO (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UPU, WHO, WIPO,

Diplomatic representation in the US:  chief of mission: Ambassador
PUTEH ibni Mohammad Alam FAX: [1] (202) 885-0560 telephone: [1] (202)
237-1838 chancery: 3520 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008

Diplomatic representation from the US:  chief of mission: Ambassador
Sylvia Gaye STANFIELD embassy: Third Floor, Teck Guan Plaza, Jalan
Sultan, Bandar Seri Begawan mailing address: PSC 470 (BSB), FPO AP 96507
telephone: [673] (2) 229670 FAX: [673] (2) 225293

Flag description:  yellow with two diagonal bands of white (top,
almost double width) and black starting from the upper hoist side;
the national emblem in red is superimposed at the center; the emblem
includes a swallow-tailed flag on top of a winged column within an
upturned crescent above a scroll and flanked by two upraised hands

Economy Brunei

Economy - overview:  This small, wealthy economy is a mixture of foreign
and domestic entrepreneurship, government regulation, welfare measures,
and village tradition.  Crude oil and natural gas production account for
nearly half of GDP. Per capita GDP is far above most other Third World
countries, and substantial income from overseas investment supplements
income from domestic production. The government provides for all medical
services and subsidizes rice and housing. Brunei's leaders are concerned
that steadily increased integration in the world economy will undermine
internal social cohesion although it became a more prominent player by
serving as chairman for the 2000 APEC (Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation)
forum. Plans for the future include upgrading the labor force, reducing
unemployment, strengthening the banking and tourist sectors, and, in
general, further widening the economic base beyond oil and gas.

GDP:  purchasing power parity - $6.2 billion (2001 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:  3% (2001 est.)

GDP - per capita:  purchasing power parity - $18,000 (2001 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:  agriculture: 5% industry: 45% services: 50%
(2001 est.)

Population below poverty line:  NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share:  lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices):  1% (1999 est.)

Labor force:  143,400 (1999 est.); note - includes foreign workers and
military personnel note: temporary residents make up 41% of labor force

Labor force - by occupation:  government 48%, production of oil, natural
gas, services, and construction 42%, agriculture, forestry, and fishing
10% (1999 est.)

Unemployment rate:  10% (2001 est.)

Budget:  revenues: $2.5 billion expenditures: $2.6 billion, including
capital expenditures of $1.35 billion (1997 est.)

Industries:  petroleum, petroleum refining, liquefied natural gas,

Industrial production growth rate:  4% (1997 est.)

Electricity - production:  2.22 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - production by source:  fossil fuel: 100% hydro: 0% other: 0%
(2000) nuclear: 0%

Electricity - consumption:  2.065 billion kWh (2000)

Electricity - exports:  0 kWh (2000)

Electricity - imports:  0 kWh (2000)

Agriculture - products:  rice, vegetables, fruits, chickens, water buffalo

Exports:  $3 billion (f.o.b., 2000 est.)

Exports - commodities:  crude oil, natural gas, refined products

Exports - partners:  Japan 42%, US 17%, South Korea 14%, Thailand 3%

Imports:  $1.4 billion (c.i.f., 2000 est.)

Imports - commodities:  machinery and transport equipment, manufactured
goods, food, chemicals

Imports - partners:  Singapore 34%, UK 15%, Malaysia 15%, US 5% (1999)

Debt - external:  $0

Economic aid - recipient:  $4.3 million (1995)

Currency:  Bruneian dollar (BND)

Currency code:  BND

Exchange rates:  Bruneian dollars per US dollar - 1.8388 (January 2002),
1.8917 (2001), 1.7240 (2000), 1.6950 (1999), 1.6736 (1998), 1.4848
(1997); note - the Bruneian dollar is at par with the Singapore dollar

Fiscal year:  calendar year

Communications Brunei

Telephones - main lines in use:  79,000 (1996)

Telephones - mobile cellular:  43,524 (1996)

Telephone system:  general assessment: service throughout country
is excellent; international service good to Europe, US, and East Asia
domestic: every service available international: satellite earth stations
- 2 Intelsat (1 Indian Ocean and 1 Pacific Ocean); digital submarine
cable links to Malaysia, Singapore, and Philippines (2001)

Radio broadcast stations:  AM 3, FM 10, shortwave 0 (1998)

Radios:  329,000 (1998)

Television broadcast stations:  2 (1997)

Televisions:  201,900 (1998)

Internet country code:  .bn

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):  2 (2000)

Internet users:  28,000 (2001)

Transportation Brunei

Railways:  total: 13 km (private line) narrow gauge: 13 km 0.610-m gauge
(2001 est.)

Highways:  total: 1,712 km paved: 1,284 km unpaved: 428 km (1996)

Waterways:  209 km; navigable by craft drawing less than 1.2 m

Pipelines:  crude oil 135 km; petroleum products 418 km; natural gas
920 km

Ports and harbors:  Bandar Seri Begawan, Kuala Belait, Muara, Seria,

Merchant marine:  total: 7 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 348,476
GRT/340,635 DWT ships by type: liquefied gas 7 note: includes some
foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: United
Kingdom 7 (2002 est.)

Airports:  2 (2001)

Airports - with paved runways:  total: 1 over 3,047 m: 1 (2001)

Airports - with unpaved runways:  total: 1 914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2001)

Heliports:  3 (2001)

Military Brunei

Military branches:  Land Forces, Navy, Air Force, Royal Brunei Police

Military manpower - military age:  18 years of age (2002 est.)

Military manpower - availability:  males age 15-49: 108,921 (2002 est.)

Military manpower - fit for military service:  males age 15-49: 62,864
(2002 est.)

Military manpower - reaching military age annually:  males: 3,005
(2002 est.)

Military expenditures - dollar figure:  $343 million (FY98)

Military expenditures - percent of GDP:  5.1% (FY98)

Transnational Issues Brunei

Disputes - international:  Brunei established an exclusive economic
fishing zone encompassing Louisa Reef in southern Spratly Islands in 1984,
but makes no public territorial claim to the offshore reefs

Illicit drugs:  drug trafficking and illegally importing controlled
substances are serious offenses in Brunei and carry a mandatory death

This page was last updated on 1 January 2002

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