Brunei gained its independence from the United Kingdom on 1st January 1984.
Economic growth during the 1990s and 2000s, with the GDP increasing 56% from 1999 to 2008, transformed Brunei into an industrialised country.
It has developed wealth from extensive petroleum and natural gas fields.
Brunei has the second-highest Human Development Index among the Southeast Asian nations, after Singapore, and is classified as a developing country.
According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Brunei is ranked fifth in the world by gross domestic product per capita at purchasing power parity.