Labuan is an island with an area of 75 sq km, lying 10 km off the coast of Sabah and 25km off the coast of Brunei. As part of the Malaysian Federal Territory of Labuan it is directly administered by the Malaysian central government. The island is mostly flat and is covered by forests. Labuan has some of beaches on its northern coast, which are fine but not too impressive. Victoria, the capital of Labuan, lies on the southern coast of Labuan. Originally uninhabited, Labuan was first settled by the British in the 1840s, subsequently becoming a British colony. Labuan was occupied by the Japanese during World War II, and joined the Malaysian Federation in 1963. Today Labuan is mainly known as an offshore financial centre offering international financial and business services. It also attracts tourists from Brunei who come for diving and tourists from Australia who come to visit World War II sites.
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