Brunei Darussalam’s foreign policy objective is to promote the country’s national interests taking into account of its situation and role in the region and globally.
As described on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) website, Brunei’s national interests are to: maintain its sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity; preserve the political, cultural and religious identity of the country; help promote regional and global peace, security, stability and prosperity; and enhance the prosperity, economic and social well-being of the country.
In the pursuit of these foreign policy objectives, Brunei adheres to the following guiding principles: mutual respect for the territorial integrity, sovereignty, independence and national identity of all nations; recognising the equality of all nations large and small; adherence to the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other nations; advocating peaceful settlement of disputes; and cooperating for mutual benefit.
The approach taken by Brunei to promote its foreign policy is through bilateral and multilateral cooperation on the basis of friendship, mutual respect and peaceful co-existence. This is carried out through: establishing relations with countries who wish to have friendly ties with Brunei; promoting and strengthening bilateral and multilateral cooperation in various fields through the country’s participation in sub-regional, regional and international organisations; contributing towards promoting peace, security, stability and prosperity in the region, particularly by fostering deeper understanding among countries; adhering to the United Nations Charter, the ASEAN Charter, international law, universally recognised principles of sovereignty and the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.
Established in 1994, Brunei-Indonesia- Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) is an initiative to accelerate socio-economic development in this sub-region. Brunei is part of the close knit sub-regional economic grouping of BIMP-EAGA with a population of 75 million people.
During the 12th ASEAN-UN Summit in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in November, 2022, 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 underscored the importance of subregional work, in which His Majesty highlighted that the BIMP-EAGA remains a significant growth area with huge development, investment and industrialisation potential. His Majesty expressed his appreciation for the Republic of Korea’s contribution to the BIMP-EAGA-ROK Cooperation Fund which will further socio-economic progress.
Meanwhile, the 25th BIMP-EAGA Ministers’ Meeting held later that month welcomed the improvement proposals from the Mid- Term Review (MTR) of the BIMP-EAGA Vision 2025 (BEV 2025) as a driver towards economic recovery and the achievement of three main results: clean and environmentally friendly manufacturing; competitive and resilient agricultural and fisheries industries to climate change; and as a tourist destination of various developed countries.
The MTR also suggested strengthening the capacity of BIMP-EAGA institutions to further improve coordination and delivery of results in this sub-region. The meeting also emphasised BIMPEAGA’s commitment to fully implement BEV 2025. Also voiced was the need for BIMP-EAGA to start creating the foundations for the BIMP-EAGA Post 2025 agenda.
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