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Brunei (// i broo-NY, Malay: [brunaɪ] i), formally Brunei Darussalam (Malay: Negara Brunei Darussalam, Jawi: نݢارا بروني دارالسلام, lit. 'State of Brunei, the Abode of Peace'), is a country in Southeast Asia, situated on the northern coast of the island of Borneo. Apart from its coastline on the South China Sea, it is completely surrounded by the Malaysian state of Sarawak, with its territory bifurcated by the Sarawak district of Limbang. Brunei is the only sovereign state entirely on Borneo; the remainder of the island is divided between Malaysia and Indonesia. As of 2020[update] the country had a population of 460,345, of whom approximately 100,000 resided in the capital and largest city Bandar Seri Begawan. The government of Brunei is an absolute monarchy ruled by the Sultan of Brunei, and it implements a fusion of English common law and jurisprudence inspired by Islam, including sharia.
Negara Brunei Darussalam (Malay)
and largest city
|Bandar Seri Begawan|
and national language
and local dialects
|Government||Unitary Islamic absolute monarchy|
• Crown Prince and Senior Minister
|Legislature||Legislative Council of Brunei|
|17 September 1888|
• Independence from the United Kingdom
|1 January 1984|
|7 January 1984|
|5,765 km2 (2,226 sq mi) (164th)|
• Water (%)
• 2020 estimate
• 2016 census
|72.11/km2 (186.8/sq mi) (134th)|
|GDP (PPP)||2022 estimate|
|$31.904 billion (145th)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2022 estimate|
|$18.464 billion (122nd)|
• Per capita
|HDI (2021)|| 0.829|
very high · 51st
|Currency||Brunei dollar (BND)|
|Time zone||UTC+8 (Brunei Darussalam Time)|
|ISO 3166 code||BN|
At the Bruneian Empire's peak during the reign of Sultan Bolkiah (1485–1528), the state is claimed to have had control over the most of Borneo, including modern-day Sarawak and Sabah, as well as the Sulu archipelago and the islands off the northwestern tip of Borneo. There are also claims to its historical control over Seludong, the site of the modern Philippine capital of Manila, but Southeast Asian scholars believe the name of the location in question is actually in reference to Mount Selurong, in Indonesia. The maritime state of Brunei was visited by the surviving crew of the Magellan Expedition in 1521, and in 1578 it fought against Spain in the Castilian War.
During the 19th century, the Bruneian Empire began to decline. The Sultanate ceded Sarawak (Kuching) to James Brooke and installed him as the White Rajah, and it ceded Sabah to the British North Borneo Chartered Company. In 1888, Brunei became a British protectorate and was assigned a British resident as colonial manager in 1906. After the Japanese occupation during World War II, a new constitution was written in 1959. In 1962, a small armed rebellion against the monarchy was ended with British assistance. The country gained its full independence from Britain on 1 January 1984.
Brunei has been led by Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah since 1967. The country's wealth derives from its extensive petroleum and natural gas fields. Economic growth during the 1990s and 2000s has transformed Brunei into an industrialised country, with the GDP increasing 56% between 1999 and 2008. Brunei has the second-highest Human Development Index among Southeast Asian states, trailing only Singapore. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Brunei is ranked fifth in the world by gross domestic product per capita at purchasing power parity. The IMF estimated in 2011 that Brunei was one of two countries (the other being Libya) with a public debt to national GDP ratio of 0%.