The private sector employment rate witnessed a growth of 0.7% from 68.5% in 2021 to 69.2% in 2022, as revealed by the 2022 Labour Force Survey (LFS) Report conducted by Brunei’s Department of Economic Planning and Statistics (JPES), under the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE).
The majority of the employed individuals were local workers, constituting over half of the workforce. Among them, the largest segments were service and sales workers, followed by professionals, technicians, and associate professionals.
When categorized by economic activity, the mining and quarrying sector, along with accommodation and food services, as well as professional, technical, administration, and support services, emerged as the primary sectors of local employment.
The LFS report also disclosed that the average monthly income across all job types registered an uptick of 16.5%, escalating from BND1,536 per employed person in 2021 to BND1,789 in 2022. This growth was primarily attributed to the private sector’s employment expansion.
Meanwhile, the labor force participation rate experienced a marginal decrease of 1.1%, moving from 63.8% in 2021 to 62.7% in 2022. The reduction was influenced by an increased population outside the labor force, predominantly among individuals aged 55 and above.
Average weekly working hours for all professions saw a 2.3% decrease, settling at 46.4 hours per week in 2022 compared to the previous year’s 47.5 hours. This decline was mainly due to fewer average hours worked by foreign workers.
The report also indicated a slight rise in the unemployment rate of 0.3%, ascending from 4.9% in 2021 to 5.2% in 2022. Most of the unemployed fell within the age group of 25 to 29 and possessed tertiary-level education.
The number of individuals not part of the labor force rose by 3.9% from the previous year, with 94.6% being those who were neither actively job hunting nor ready to work due to reasons such as ongoing studies, training courses, family responsibilities, and household duties. The survey noted that youth accounted for approximately 32.1% of this group.
The comprehensive survey’s objectives encompass collecting current data on the labor force’s characteristics, employment, and unemployment trends. This information will be instrumental in guiding policy-making, research, and planning related to workforce management. The survey encompassed around 3,200 selected households using a systematic sampling approach, and the extrapolated data were calibrated to mirror the entire population residing in regular households across the Sultanate.