Following a recovery in 2019, the Bruneian economy is expected to continue to register positive growth in 2020, supported by the full operation of Hengyi’s refinery production.
The major risks facing the economy are associated with its high dependence on the oil and gas sector, which can be affected by unexpected disruptions in oil and gas production, geopolitical risks, and a slowdown in major global economies as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. While Brunei has made commendable progress to diversify the economy, it is still highly reliant on the upstream oil and gas sector.
It is critical to further diversify the economy and continue improving the “doing business” environment to provide more employment opportunities, increase non-oil and gas fiscal revenue, boost economic resilience, and ensure long-term sustainability. The Brunei authorities should also continue to upgrade human capital, maintain fiscal sustainability, and further develop the financial sector.