The official name is the State of Brunei Darussalam (Negara Brunei Darussalam). Located in Southeast Asia. Area approx. 5.8 thousand km2, population 338 thousand people. (2001). The official language is Malay. The capital is the city of Bandar Seri Begawan (about 100 thousand people). Public holiday – February 23, celebrated since January 1984 since the declaration of independence. The monetary unit is the Brunei ringgit.
Member of the UN, ASEAN, OIC, APEC, WTO, Commonwealth of Nations, etc.
Geography of Brunei
Located between approximately 5° north latitude and 150° east longitude. It is washed by the South China Sea. The sea coast is not uniform. If in the northeast, in the area of the capital, the Brunei Bay dominates with many islands, then further in the west, a sandy sloping coastline interspersed with mangroves prevails. The coastal lowland gradually turns into low chains of hills, and in the south into the foothills. The eastern coast of the country is heavily swamped. It borders with Malaysia. The territory consists of two enclaves separated by the territory of Malaysia.
Among the minerals hydrocarbon raw materials are oil and natural gas. Brunei is the world’s fourth largest producer of liquefied natural gas.
Soils are mostly sandy-clay, highly prone to erosion. The climate is tropical, equatorial. It is subject to strong influence of monsoons from the waters of the South China Sea. The average annual temperature is +32-34°C. There are no large lakes and rivers in the country. Rivers – Brunei, Tudong, Temburong, Belait flow, as a rule, from the hills of the southern part of the country to the north, flowing into the South China Sea.
Enclaves relatively untouched by economic activity have survived only in the southern regions of the country. The cultivated landscape dominates the northern coastal regions. The animal world is represented mainly by birds.
The population of Brunei
According to Countryaah, population grows approx. 2.4% annually, incl. due to the migration of the population from the Malaysian and Indonesian parts of Kalimantan. Mortality 7%, infant mortality 7 pers. per 1000 newborns. Life expectancy is 76 years, the highest in Southeast Asia.
The urban population is 72%, which is associated with the concentration of St. 1/3 Brunei in the capital Bandar Seri Begawan and its immediate suburbs. The retirement age ranges from 55 to 60 years, depending on membership in pension schemes. The educational level is 95% for men, 88% for women.
Ethnic composition of the population: Malays – 70%, related to them representatives of the aboriginal (Dayak) peoples of Kalimantan – approx. 6%, ethnic Chinese – 20%, Europeans, Indians, etc. – 4%.
Languages: Malay, English. The state religion is Sunni Islam, which is practiced by 2/3 of the population.
History of Brunei
In the beginning of 16th century, the Sultanate of Brunei was one of the most powerful states of Southeast Asia, whose possessions extended to the territory of the entire North Kalimantan, as well as to the Sulu archipelago and part of the Southern Philippines. Brunei was the center of the spread of Islam in the region and an important transit point for trade between China, India and the Middle East. All R. 16th century (c. 1545), Portuguese navigators entered into an agreement with the Sultan of Brunei to open a route to the area of the “Spice Islands” (Moluccas). The Portuguese extended the name of the sultanate to the entire island of Kalimantan, and it subsequently became widespread in the distorted form of Borneo.
In 19th century Brunei became the object of the colonial expansion of the British Empire. At the beginning it was considered as an important coal station between Singapore and Hong Kong. In the future, the Brunei Sultanate, weakened by civil strife, lost one region after another.
In 1888, a British protectorate was established over Brunei.
In 1962, the sultanate agreed in principle to become part of the Federation of Malaysia, which was being formed, as part of Malaya proper, Singapore, and British possessions in North Kalimantan. However, during the negotiations, such controversial issues remained open as the status of the Sultan of Brunei, one of the most prominent monarchs in the region, the extent of autonomy and self-government within the Federation, and the amount of contributions to the federal budget.
In December 1962, an uprising broke out in Brunei, the adjacent regions of North Borneo, and Sarawak against entry into Malaysia. A “new revolutionary state” of North Kalimantan was proclaimed. The uprising was crushed by British troops.
Brunei remained under the British protectorate until the end. 1983. An independent state was proclaimed on January 1, 1984.