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Showing posts from March, 2017

Hengyi Brunei Investments Raises Optimism, Creates Jobs

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Hengyi investment raises optimism, says Minister
on: March 28, 2017

| Danial Norjidi |

THE Hengyi Industries’ Crude Oil Refinery and Aromatics Cracker Complex project on Pulau Muara Besar is a testament to Brunei’s attractiveness to reputable international companies as one of the top destinations for foreign direct investments.

This point was made by Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Haji Ibrahim, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance II, in his keynote speech during the Implementation Agreement signing yesterday between Hengyi Industries Sdn Bhd, the Energy and Industry Department at the Prime Minister’s Office and the Brunei Economic Development Board.

“The signing of this Implementation Agreement is a significant milestone for Brunei Darussalam in its continued objective towards a more conducive and pro-business environment,” he said.

“As such, I am happy to be joined today by fellow members of the Steering …

Pulau Muara Besar (PMB): US$3.45 billion Hengyi's Investment

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Milestone PMB deal
on: March 28, 2017

| Danial Norjidi |

HENGYI Industries Sdn Bhd, Energy and Industry Department at the Prime Minister’s Office (EIDPMO) and Brunei Economic Development Board (BEDB) signed an Implementation Agreement yesterday, marking a significant milestone in the progress to develop an oil refinery and aromatics plant at Pulau Muara Besar (PMB).

During the signing ceremony Hengyi also announced its Final Investment Decision (FID) of US$3.445 billion for the development of the refinery and petrochemical complex.

The project is expected to be completed in 2019.

The signing took place at the Empire Hotel & Country Club between EIDPMO as regulator, BEDB as facilitator and Hengyi as project proponent.

Present as the guest of honour at the event was Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Haji Ibrahim, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance II. Senior government officials, state dignitaries and indu…

Malay Islamic Monarchy: Practice and Appreciation (MIB Series)

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Malay Islamic Monarchy: Practice and Appreciation
on: March 27, 2017

| Dr Haji Muhammad Hadi bin Md Melayong
Senior Special Duties Officer, Secretariat Office, MIB Supreme Council |

SINCE the proclamation of Brunei Darussalam as a Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB) state in 1984, His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam has been tirelessly advising his subjects to not only practise, but to understand and appreciate the values of MIB.

He had decreed that MIB is a gift from Allah the Almighty and the pearl of the nation that acts as a firewall to filter foreign influences that may contradict with Brunei values.

Since Brunei Darussalam achieved its independence 33 years ago, approximately 49 titahs touching on MIB topics have been delivered by His Majesty.

He had stressed the importance of MIB as a way of life for Bruneians which should be practi…

HM Sultan Brunei: Foster Savings Habit in Children

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Foster saving habit in children, urges Sultan
on: March 26, 2017

| Azlan Othman |

HIS Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam urged parents and guardians to nurture the habit of saving among children and encourage them to be prudent in spending.

Delivering a titah during an event to celebrate Perbadanan Tabung Amanah Islam Brunei’s (TAIB) 25th anniversary yesterday at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Berakas, His Majesty said inculcating the habit of saving from childhood will not only help strengthen the finances of both the children and their families but also enhance the country’s economy.

“I would like to recall the original purpose of TAIB’s establishment – which is to become an institution that acts as a catalyst to nurture the habit of saving among children from school age till they have their own family,” His Majesty sai…

TAIB Supports Islamic Financial Institutions Vision

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Perbadanan TAIB supports vision of Islamic financial institution
on: March 26, 2017

| Azlan Othman |

THE setting up of Perbadanan Tabung Amanah Islam Brunei (TAIB) is the starting point of an Islamic financial institution in the country to support the far-sighted vision of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam to establish an Islamic financial institution to carry out a financial system without interest, Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohd Yussof, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports who is also the Chairman of Perbadanan TAIB Board of Directors said.

Speaking at Perbadanan TAIB’s 25th anniversary celebrations at the International Convention Centre, Berakas yesterday, Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi said Perbadanan TAIB was set up on Septe…

Brunei Fostering Sustainable Forestry Industry

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Brunei fostering sustainable forestry industry
on: March 22, 2017

| James Kon |

IN LINE with the recently-launched strategic plan of the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT), the Forestry Department has launched a slew of initiatives to create a sustainable forestry industry in the country.

The department’s latest mission is focussed on the utilisation of modern technology to increase productivity and develop products for the export market while keeping up with the continuous conservation efforts to protect the nation’s rich forest resources, said Noralinda binti Haji Ibrahim, Acting Director of Forestry under the MPRT.

“We have been able keep the balance between socio-economic and environmental interests for the prosperity of the people and nation,” she noted while speaking at an event to mark the International Day of Forests 2017 held at the Berakas Forest Reserve Recreation Park.

According to Noralinda, the strategic plan will be beneficial to the forestry-relat…

Brunei Minister of Home Affairs: 17 FDI Firms Create 1,321 Jobs

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17 FDI firms create 1,321 jobs
on: March 21, 2017I

| Azlan Othman |

THE government has managed to attract foreign investors to the country, and will continue striving to provide an ecosystem conducive to making Brunei Darussalam an attractive foreign direct investment (FDI) destination, in an effort to diversify the national economy, said YB Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong, Minister of Home Affairs.

In his wrap-up speech on the 11th day of the 13th Legislative Council session yesterday, the minister said it is undeniable that the presence of FDI companies has contributed to national economic growth. At present, 17 foreign companies are operating in the country, providing employment to 1,321 local workers – or 58 per cent of the total number of employees under their hire, he said.

In fact, many foreign companies hire more local employees compared to foreign workers. Examples of such companies include Brunei Methanol Company…

Brunei Development Budget 2017/2018 - $1 billion

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$1 billion for 10th NDP
on: March 19, 2017

| Hakim Hayat |

THE slower pace of economic growth due to global oil price woes and a tight overall budget for the 2017-2018 fiscal did not deter the government to do a pump-priming to catalise the economy.

A budget totalling $1 billion has been proposed to fund projects and programmes under the 10th National Development Plan (NDP) during the new financial year, a 30 per cent increase compared to the $700 million allocated for the 2016-17 NDP.

This was announced by YB Pehin Orang Kaya Laila Setia Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Haji Ibrahim, the Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and Minister of Finance II, on the 10th day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

During the budget deliberation, he said that the new financial year’s proposed budget for the 10th NDP has been devised to sustain the focus and priorities of the budget theme for 2017-2018 which emphasises objective spending to support su…

Brunei's Permanent and Deputy Permanent Secretaries (Updated 18 March 2017)

Two new Permanent Secretary and Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Development has been announced.

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PERMANENT SECRETARIES

Prime Minister's Office (PMO)
Dato Paduka Yahya bin Haji Idris (Corporate Affairs and Civil Service)
Dato Paduka Haji Jamain bin Haji Julaihi (Energy)
Haji Hamzah bin Haji Sulaiman (Economy and Finance)
Dato Paduka Haji Joanda HA Rashid (Law and Welfare)
Pengiran Datin Shazainah bte Pg Dato Paduka Shariffudin (International)*
Md Riza bin Dato Paduka Hj Md Yunos (Media and Cabinet)
Haji Md Azmi bin Haji Hanifah (Industry)

Ministry of Defence (MINDEF)
Capt (Rtd) Abdul Rahman bin Begawan Mudim Dato Paduka Haji Bakar

Ministry of Finance (MOF)
Haji Nazmi bin Haji Mohammad (Management and International)
Ahmaddin bin Haji Abd Rahman (Performance)

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MOFAT)
Dato Paduka Lim Jock Hoi
Datin Tan Bee Yong*
Dato Paduka Haji Matnor bin Haji Jeludin
Sheikh Haji Fadilah bin Sheikh Haji Ahmad
Emaleen bte Abdul Rahman Teo*

Ministry of Home Affa…

Brunei Minister of Communications: MOC Budget for 2017/2018 $122 million

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MinCom gets $122M
on: March 17, 2017

| Abdul Hakiim Yakof |

THE Ministry of Communications (MinCom) has been allocated a budget of 122.28 million for the 2017-2018 financial year.

This was announced by the Minister of Communications Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Mustappa bin Haji Sirat in his budget speech on the ninth day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

“Of this allocation, approximately $41 million has been set aside for the payment of staff salaries, $26 million for recurring expenses and $54 million for development expenditure,” he noted.

Although the allocation, particularly in relation to staff salaries and recurring expenses, shows a slight reduction compared to last year, MinCom will be able to meet its goals, notwithstanding the current economic environment, the minister added.

According to him, this reduction also reflects the efforts undertaken by the departments under MinCom so far to save money such as privatisation of services that are not cost-e…

Brunei Minister of Health: Budget for Health $323.8 million

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$323.8M for health
on: March 16, 2017

| Azaraimy HH |

THE Ministry of Health (MoH) has received a budget allocation of $323.88 million, including $7,766,900 for development expenditure, for the 2017-18 financial year.

This was stated by the Minister of Health YB Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Zulkarnain bin Haji Hanafi in his opening speech on the eighth day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

The minister expressed his gratitude to His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam for the allocation and His Majesty’s leadership which gives a high importance to matters concerning health.

Quoting from His Majesty’s titah, the minister said, “Health is the most important factor for all. If the body is healthy, all works can be carried out well. This is the secret or value of health.”

He added, “As it was said during the 12th LegCo session i…

Brunei Minister of Culture, Youth & Sports: Budget MCYS $76.3 million

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MCYS receives $76.33M budget
on: March 16, 2017

| Rokiah Mahmud |

THE Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS) has been allocated a budget of $76.33 million for the financial year 2017-2018, YB Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohd Yussof, Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, announced during his budget speech on the eighth day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

The allocated budget for the ministry is less than $8.79 million compared to the $85.13 million which the ministry received for the 2016-2017 fiscal.

Despite the cuts, the minister said that MCYS will optimise and prioritise its multi-level mechanism for consultation, coordination, monitoring as well as programme evaluation by establishing more cooperation with other government ministries and departments, non-governmental organisations and the private sector towards achieving a higher level of success.

For the new financial year, he explained…

Brunei Minister of Development: Budget $203.4 million for 2017/2018

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Ministry of Development gets $203.429M budget
on: March 15, 2017

| Azlan Othman |


THE Ministry of Development (MoD) has been allocated a budget of $203.429 million for the financial year 2017-2018, YB Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Bahrin bin Abdullah, Minister of Development, said during the seventh day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

This year’s allocation shows a decline of 15.35 per cent, or $31,350,610, compared to the previous fiscal.

Of the total budget, the minister said $102.99 million (50.60 per cent) is for staff salaries and $100.43 million (49.40 per cent) for recurring expenses. Meanwhile, $174.51 million has been earmarked separately for development expenses.

For the financial year 2017-2018, the ministry will continue to focus on customer friendliness, generating income from services and related activities and improving of cash flow management including revenue collection and dues reduction, the minister said.

Emphasis will also be given to incr…

HM Sultan Brunei Visits Gurkha Tuker Lines Seria

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Great royal welcome
on: March 15, 2017

| Azaraimy HH & Daniel Lim |





HIS Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, Minister of Defence and Supreme Commander of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces visited the First Battalion of the Royal Gurkha Rifles at Tuker Lines, Seria, yesterday.

The visit marked the end of the battalion’s four-year posting to Brunei and gave its troops an opportunity to thank His Majesty for the excellent four years they have had in the Sultanate.

The First Battalion will be replaced by the Second Battalion in July 2017.

His Majesty arrived at the Brunei Garrison Officers’ Mess via helicopter and upon landing, the monarch was greeted by Pehin Datu Pekerma Jaya Major General Dato Paduka Seri Mohd Tawih bin Abdullah, Commander of the Royal Brunei Armed Forces, and Lieutenant Colonel Charlie Crowe, Commanding Officer of the British…

Brunei Minister Primary Resources & Tourism: Budget $51.54 million

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MPRT sees major leap on: March 12, 2017
| Rokiah Mahmud |



THE Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) has been allocated a budget of $51.54 million for the 2017-2018 financial year.

This was announced by YB Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Haji Apong, the Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism, during his budget deliberation on the fifth day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

He said that his ministry is trying to intensify the diversification of the country’s primary resources to boost their contribution to the national gross domestic product (GDP) as well as efforts in creating new employment opportunities as part of the ministry’s Strategic Plan 2016–2020.

Highlighting the plan, the minister said that the MPRT’s vision is ‘Towards Rapid Growth in the output of Primary Resources and Tourism – to contribute towards economic growth in order to realise the Brunei Vision 2035’.

Despite the lower oil price that has impacted global economy including Brune…

Brunei Minister of Home Affairs: Ministry's Budget 2017/2018 $131.7 Million

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MoHA gets B$131.7M budget
on: March 10, 2017

| Rokiah Mahmud | THE Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) has been allocated a budget of B$131.7 million for the 2017-2018 financial year.

In his budget deliberation on the fourth day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday, the Minister of Home Affairs, YB Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia (Dr) Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong, elaborated the main challenges that need to be addressed including the country’s slow economic growth.

The minister explained that in the new budget B$94.84 million has been allocated for salary payments B$36.86 million for annual recurring expenses.

According to the minister, the main challenges that need to be tackled by the ministry include ensuring effective services to the public according to their current needs and being customer friendly and efficient.

He said that in line with the concept of performance budgeting, the ministry and departments under it has formulated strategies to…

Brunei Minister of Education: Ministry of Education Budget 2017/2018 $666.5 Million

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B$666.5M allocated to MoE
on: March 10, 2017

| Danial Norjidi |


THE Ministry of Education (MoE) will have a budget of B$666.57 million for the 2017-2018 financial year.

This was announced yesterday by YB Pehin Orang Kaya Indera Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Suyoi bin Haji Osman, the Minister of Education while delivering a speech during the fourth day of the 13th Legislative Council (LegCo) session.

The minister expressed his gratitude to the government for the trust and support in providing MoE with a budget of B$666.57 million for the 2017-2018 financial year.

He shared that, from the ministry’s budget, B$498.79 million has been allocated for staff wages, while B$167.78 million is for recurring expenses, and B$19.82 million for development expenditure.

In the 2016-2017 fiscal year, the MoE had received an allocation of $726.65 million.

“The MoE will ensure that all its plans are actionable and realistic, as well as cost-effective, so that all issues can be handled in an effect…

HM Sultan Brunei Laments Students' Low Proficiency in Quran Reading

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Sultan laments students’ low proficiency in Quran reading
on: March 10, 2017

| Hakim Hayat |



THE level of Al-Quran reading proficiency and precision in carrying out prayers among students in the country is indicating a worrying trend, His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam said.

In light of this, constant review and monitoring of religious education at religious and public schools are needed to ensure its effectiveness, His Majesty said in a titah delivered on the occasion of the finals of National Al-Quran Reading Competition for Adults 1438 Hijrah/2017 held at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Berakas last evening.

Citing a study initiated by His Majesty himself and carried out by the Ministry of Religious Affairs (MoRA) and Ministry of Education (MoE) last year for students at all levels of education, the monarch highlighted t…