Globalization and economic diversification in the Sultanate of Brunei.


George O. Tasie

Negara Brunei Darussalam is a small but rich country with an area of 5765 square km in Southeast Asia (Figure 1). According to the 1991 population census, there were as many as 71,000 or 27% temporary resident who are migrant workers since the population of Brunei is not enough to provide all the human resources required to implement its development objectives. On the other hand, according to a Labour Force Survey, unemployment has increased from 3.6% in 1981 to 4.7% in 1991 and 4.9% in 1995. This has accounted for the growing call for diversification, not only to temper the over reliance on oil and gas, but also to provide more job opportunities for the growing work force among the nationals. This paper will examine the effect of the diversification programmes as contained in the Seventh Five-Year Development Plan (1996 - 2000) in Brunei, whilst preserving domestic stability and Islamic values for which the country has been known for centuries.

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