Organizations / Brunei - CIRS

International Center for Scientific Research

Organizations / Brunei

  • Country name : Brunei (Negara Brunei Darussalam)
  • Official name : Sultanate of Brunei
  • System of government : Constitutional sultanate
  • National anthem :


  • Area : 5770 km²
  • Capital : Bandar Seri Begawan
  • Border countries : Malaysia


  • Population : 350 898 (2002)
  • Language(s) : Malay (official), Chinese, English
  • Religions : Muslim (67%), Buddhist (13%), Christian (10%), indigenous beliefs and other (10%)


>Brunei benefits from extensive petroleum and natural gas fields. The country is the third largest oil producer in Southeast Asia and it is also the fourth largest producer of liquefied natural gas in the world.
>Exports of crude oil and natural gas account for over half of GDP. But the country is dependent on a single commodity so it is subject to market fluctuations.
>Brunei Darussalam also receives income from rents, royalties, corporate tax and dividendes.
>Brunei's economy must rely exclusively on imports for nearly all of its manufactured goods and most of its food. The government tries to diversify the economy away from oil and gas.
>Rice, bananas, cassava, pineapples and other are raised.


>Brunei Darussalam is one of Asia's oldest kingdoms, having been in existence for more than 1500 years.
>6th century AD : the country was known to be trading with and paying tribute to China.
>It then came under Hindu influence for a time through allegiance to the Majapahit kingdom in Java.
>In the early 15th century, with the decline of the Majapahit kingdom and widespread conversion to Islam, Brunei became an independant sultanate.
>By the 19th century, the power of the sultan has declined and Brunei has become a haven for pirates.
>1888 : Brunei became a British protectorate, although the sultan retained formal authority.
>1906 : the British Residential system was introduced in Brunei.
>Oil, the source of Brunei Darussalam's current wealth, was first struck at Seria in 1929 and went into commercial production in 1932.
>During World War II, Japan occupied Brunei ; it was liberated by Australia in 1945.
>1959 : promulgation of a written Constitution, which gave the State self-government, made the Sultan supreme executive authority in the country, and changed the post of British Resident to High Commissioner who continued to advise the Sultan on all matters other than those relating to Islam and Malay customs.
>1968 : Sultan Bolkiah was crowned at the age of 22, succeeding his father, Sir Omar Ali Saifuddin, who had abdicated.
>Following the signing of a treaty with the British in 1979, Brunei became fully independant in 1984. An Islamic sultanate was proclaimed.
>1997-98 : Brunei was affected by the Asian economic crisis, losing billions of dollars in investments.
>In 1999, the sultan's son, Prince al-Muhtadee Billah, was installed as heir to the throne.

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