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NEWS UPDATES 1 December 2009

Brunei reports 29% increase in 2008 exports

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Brunei’s total trade rose 26.3 per cent in 2008 while exports jumped 29.3 percent at a time when the world was grappling with an economic crisis, which tempered the growth of global trade, reported the Brunei Times.

External trade statistics just released by the Department of Economic Planning and Development Board (JPKE) showed that Brunei's total trade rose to $18.6 billion in 2008 from $14.7 billion in 2007. Exports increased to $14.9 billion from $11.56 billion during the same period.

According to the report, oil exports accounted for 53.2 percent of all exports, followed by liquefied natural gas (LNG) at 44.6 percent, and garments at 0.8 percent. Other goods accounted for 1.4 percent of total exports, comprised mainly of re-exports.

Oil exports increased a mere 4.2 percent to $7.9 billion, while LNG exports rose a whopping 91.3 percent to $6.7 billion. Garment exports declined by 31.1 percent to $121 million.

One of the main contributors to the decline in Brunei's garment exports was the increase in shipping and raw material costs due to the global financial crisis. The industry also grappled with loss of business from American brands. Cheap labour costs in China, Vietnam and Cambodia and changes in international treaties also weighed down the sector.


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