Brunei Economic Forecast

Brunei Economic Outlook

August 25, 2020

The economy is expected to have lost further momentum in the second quarter, after GDP growth slowed notably at the start of the year. Limited data is available, although imports collapsed in May, likely pointing to a stunted domestic economy. Moreover, exports of key commodities—crude oil and liquefied natural gas—also plunged, hammered by low prices. That said, soaring overseas sales of chemicals caused exports to expand overall and the trade surplus rose marginally in May. On a positive note, the government rolled back some restrictions on gatherings as well as recreational and entertainment facilities in August amid encouragingly low coronavirus counts in the country. This should support the non-energy economy in Q3.

Brunei Economic Growth

The economy is expected to grind to a near halt this year, weighed on by low global energy prices and a sharp downturn in China’s economy. That said, government stimulus will help to foster a recovery. Risks stem from volatile oil prices and the pace of China’s recovery. The panel sees GDP expanding 0.2% in 2020, which is down 0.2 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 3.1% in 2021.

Brunei Economy Data

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Population (million)0.40.40.40.40.4
GDP per capita (USD)31,38327,34628,21130,68930,135
GDP (USD bn)12.911.412.113.613.5
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)-0.6-2.51.30.13.9
Unemployment Rate7.88.69.39.29.2
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-14.5-21.7-10.6-3.6-10.5
Public Debt (% of GDP)3.03.02.82.6-  
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)-0.3-0.4-1.30.1-0.3
Policy Interest Rate (%)5.505.505.505.505.50
Exchange Rate (vs USD)1.531.531.561.591.53
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)1.541.521.601.561.51
Current Account (% of GDP)16.712.916.47.9-  
Current Account Balance (USD bn)2.21.52.01.1-  
Trade Balance (USD billion)2.92.22.42.42.1
Exports (USD billion)6.14.85.56.67.2
Imports (USD billion)3.22.73.14.25.1
Exports (annual variation in %)-44.9-21.413.820.110.2
Imports (annual variation in %)-12.3-17.315.535.722.4
International Reserves (USD)3.23.33.33.2-  
External Debt (% of GDP)-  -  -  -  -  

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Brunei Facts

Value Change Date
Exchange Rate1.340.0 %Jan 01

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