First duty-free stores open at Brunei airport

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(From L): SBC Director Sung Weonwoo, Minister of Communications Yang Berhormat Abdul Mutalib Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Yusof, Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Hj Ali Apong, Second Minister of Finance Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Paduka Dr Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah and Chairperson of Shinwoo Group of Companies Choi Sangkwon officially opening the duty-free shops at the Brunei International Airport. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

Waqiuddin Rajak
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

Travellers can now enjoy duty free shopping at the Brunei International Airport.

Operated by Korean-based firm Shinwoo Brunei Company (SBC), the duty-free shops are the first in Brunei selling tax-exempted premium branded goods at the airport’s Satellite Area, spanning four sections – watches, sunglasses, fashion and collectibles.

The project is a joint effort between the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT), the Ministry of Finance (MoF) and the Ministry of Communications (MinComm) aimed at boosting the country’s tourism and retail sector.

An SBC staff attending to a customer at the newly opened duty-free shop in the airport. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

Speaking to the media during its grand opening this afternoon, SBC director Sung Weonwoo said that his company has made an investment of B$5 million per year to operate the duty-free shops.

He added that the company has observed Brunei’s growing economy and political stability that gave the firm confidence in setting up the shops at the airport.

SBC also saw opportunities for local employment to help expand the business. The company has hired 20 Bruneians to run the duty-free shops.

Assorted Tissot branded watches are amongst the designer watches at SBC Duty-Free Shops. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

“The opening of these duty-free shops is just the beginning. The SBC team members and staff will do their best to give a pleasant and memorable shopping experience for shoppers and visitors at the airport,” the director said.

SBC, part of the Shinwoo Group of Companies in South Korea, holds strong portfolio in construction, logistics and duty-free shop operations, and that the company is looking to incorporate these expertise into Brunei.

The duty-free shops were officially opened by Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Hj Ali Apong, the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism, Yang Berhormat Abdul Mutalib Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Yusof, the Ministry of Communication, and Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Paduka Dr Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah, the Ministry of Finance II.

Also present was the chairperson of Shinwoo Group of Companies Choi Sangkwon.

Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Hj Ali Apong (2nd L), Second Minister of Finance Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Paduka Dr Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah (2nd R) and Minister of Communications Yang Berhormat Abdul Mutalib Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Yusof (R) having light moments as the browse over the designer watches at the new duty-free shops. Image: Waqiuddin Rajak

Following the grand opening and tour, YB Dato Ali expressed his gratitude over the cooperation between the three ministries that made the duty-free shops at the airport possible.

The minister said the opening of the duty-free shops are expected to open opportunities for foreign companies to invest in Brunei.

The Bruneian