Brunei Economic Forecast

Brunei Economic Outlook

July 17, 2018

The economy is likely benefitting from the upswing in oil prices, which are up substantially year-on-year. In the first quarter, the external sector performed well according to government figures, with the trade surplus increasing significantly in annual terms on higher exports of mineral fuels, despite a surge in manufactured goods imports. In March, crude oil and liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports saw double-digit increases. This comes after economic growth surprised on the upside in Q4 of last year thanks to higher LNG and methanol production. However, the non-hydrocarbon sector was almost flat, despite government diversification efforts.

Brunei Economic Growth

Going forward, the economy should continue to strengthen, thanks to higher oil prices, new energy projects coming onstream and as diversification efforts gradually bear fruit. However, vulnerability to commodity price swings remains a downside risk to the outlook. Panelists expect GDP to expand 1.6% in 2018, up 0.2 percentage points from last month’s forecast. They foresee a 4.2% expansion in 2019.

Brunei Economy Data

20132014201520162017
Population (million)0.40.40.40.40.4
GDP per capita (USD)44,67541,59931,00726,958-  
GDP (USD bn)18.117.112.911.4-  
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)-2.1-2.3-0.6-2.5-  
Unemployment Rate7.76.96.96.96.9
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)13.03.6-14.5-21.5-  
Public Debt (% of GDP)2.23.23.03.0-  
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)0.4-0.2-0.4-0.7-0.1
Policy Interest Rate (%)5.505.505.505.505.50
Exchange Rate (vs USD)1.661.681.531.531.56
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)1.741.601.541.521.60
Current Account (% of GDP)20.930.716.09.6-  
Current Account Balance (USD bn)3.85.32.11.1-  
Trade Balance (USD billion)7.86.93.12.6-  
Exports (USD billion)11.411.56.45.2-  
Imports (USD billion)3.63.63.22.7-  
Exports (annual variation in %)-12.0-8.2-39.5-17.8-  
Imports (annual variation in %)1.1-0.4-11.3-17.3-  
International Reserves (USD)3.43.53.23.3-  

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Brunei Facts

ValueChangeDate
Exchange Rate1.370.0 %Aug 15

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