U.S. Energy Information Administration - EIA - Independent Statistics and Analysis
Country Analysis Note
- Brunei is a substantial producer and exporter of crude oil and natural gas for Asia and relies on hydrocarbon revenues for nearly two-thirds of its gross domestic product. Through its long-standing joint venture with Royal Dutch Shell, Brunei has produced oil and natural gas for several decades, primarily from two large, mature fields - Southwest Ampa and Champion - in the offshore Baram Delta. After reaching a recent peak of 220,000 barrels per day (bbl/d) in 2006, Brunei´s petroleum and other liquids production has declined to 134,000 bbl/d in 2013.
- Brunei has an interest in hydrocarbon development in the South China Sea (SCS), although it has not made any formal claims to the hotly contested Spratly or Paracel Islands. However, the country´s exclusive economic zone includes the Louisa Reef, an area of small islands in the southeastern part of the Spratly Islands. An offshore settlement with Malaysia in 2010 allows Brunei to explore untapped formerly disputed deepwater areas in the Baram Delta and issue more production sharing contracts to help prop up oil and natural gas production and offset declines from older existing fields. In 2013, Brunei National Petroleum Company (Petroleum Brunei) and Petronas of Malaysia signed several cooperation agreements for joint development of fields in both countries´ offshore areas.
- Despite the recent decline in production, Brunei is the largest net exporter of total oil liquids in the Asia-Pacific region given the country´s minimal domestic consumption. In 2013, Brunei´s net exports of total liquids were about 120,000 bbl/d, primarily crude oil sent to key Asian oil consumers. Brunei plans to expand its refinery capacity, as Chinese company Zhejiang Hengyi Group is constructing a new refinery with a capacity of 160,000 bbl/d scheduled to come online by 2017. This new facility could shift the dynamics of the country´s oil exports in favor of consuming more crude oil and exporting more petroleum products.
- Brunei produced 426 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of dry natural gas in 2012, mostly from Southwest Ampa and other fields associated with oil production. Although domestic gas demand has increased steadily in the past decade, Brunei still exports on average more than three-quarters of its output.
- Brunei has been a stable and long-term LNG exporter to Japan and Korea from its 5-train, 950 million cubic feet per day Lumut LNG liquefaction plant, sending out about 336 Bcf in 2013. South Korea and Japan renewed several of their long-term contracts in 2013 for significantly shorter terms, and Japan reduced its contracted volumes. This drop in contracted LNG amounts has prompted Brunei LNG to sell to other regional buyers and seek short-term contracts or spot cargo sales. Brunei LNG signed a 10-year contract with Petronas of Malaysia starting in 2013 and began sending out spot cargoes to other Asian consumers. French-based oil company, Total, made significant gas and condensate discoveries in Block B in 2010 which could bolster Brunei´s natural gas reserve base and sustain its production levels and support LNG exports.
- Natural gas fuels virtually all of Brunei´s electricity generation. However, the country is seeking to diversify its installed capacity, import electricity through a potential transmission line from Malaysia, expand renewable generation capacity, and improve electricity efficiencies to conserve its natural gas for exports.
Analysis Last Updated: May 2014
Overview data for Brunei+ EXPAND ALL
-- = Not applicable; NA = Not available; E = Estimate value
Sources: EIA. For more detailed data, see International Energy Statistics.
Data last updated: May 30, 2013
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