Brunei: Country and Foreign Investment
Economy and Currency
This page was last updated on 22 May 2019.
For many years, Brunei has been a significant member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) community. Its strong ties with the United Kingdom, Singapore and regional countries have led to the build-up of considerable commercial activity.
The economy has been dominated by the oil and liquefied natural gas industries. Crude oil, petroleum products and natural gas account for nearly half of GDP. These are mainly sold to Japan, South Korea, India and other ASEAN bloc countries.
In 2017, GDP at purchasing power parity was estimated at US$33.9bn (2017 est.) and GDP per capita was estimated at US$78,900. Unemployment in 2017 was 6.9%. Revenues in 2017 were $2.25 billion against expenditure of $4.35 billion.
The currency is the Bruneian dollar, whose value has held steady against the US dollar in recent years. The Bruneian dollar is fully interchangeable with the Singaporean dollar; the latter can be used for payments in Brunei.
According to the IMF the main long-term challenges for Brunei are to expand oil and gas reserves, diversify the production base by boosting private sector activity, and enhance fiscal management.