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Introduction: The Sultanate of Brunei's influence peaked 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. The same family has ruled Brunei for over six centuries. Brunei benefits from extensive petroleum and natural gas fields, the source of one of the highest per capita GDPs in...

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Economic Overview: Brunei's small, high-income, open economy is underpinned by revenue from the oil and gas sector. At over USD 31,000 Brunei's per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is among the top 25 in the world (2011 IMF data).

In 2009, oil and gas accounted for around 60 per cent of Brunei's economy. Brunei's extensive foreign investments form a large, yet unreported contribution to the national budget.

Small scale manufacturers (mainly furniture and textiles) and primary production (including agriculture, fisheries and forestry) make up the rest of Brunei's merchandise economy. Brunei imports nearly all of its ...

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History: Historians believe there was a forerunner to the present Brunei Sultanate, which the Chinese called Po-ni. Chinese and Arabic records indicate that this ancient trading kingdom existed at the mouth of the Brunei River as early as the seventh or eighth century A.D. This early kingdom was apparently conquered by the Sumatran Hindu Empire of Srivijaya in the early ninth century, which later ...

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International Relations: Brunei maintains good relations with neighbouring countries through its membership of ASEAN and frequent inward and outward high level visits. It also has close bilateral ties with fellow Islamic nations and other monarchies around the world.

Acting with ASEAN partners, Brunei is playing an increasingly valuable regional role: making well-received interventions with peacekeepers in Mindanao, Philippines and as part of the EU-ASEAN Aceh Monitoring Mission in Indonesia. Brunei also sent humanitarian and medical aid for the 2004 tsunami in Aceh and the 2006 earthquake in Yogyakarta.

Brunei's relations ...

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