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Macau, See : Flags, Maps

Macau (East & Southeast Asia)

Introduction ::Macau


Colonized by the Portuguese in the 16th century, Macau was the first European settlement in the Far East. Pursuant to an agreement signed by China and Portugal on 13 April 1987, Macau became the Macau Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People's Republic of China on 20 December 1999. In this agreement, China promised that, under its "one country, two systems" formula, China's socialist economic system would not be practiced in Macau, and that Macau would enjoy a high degree of autonomy in all matters except foreign and defense affairs for the next 50 years.

Geography ::Macau


Eastern Asia, bordering the South China Sea and China

Geographic coordinates:
22 10 N, 113 33 E

Map references:

Southeast Asia


total: 28.2 sq km country comparison to the world: 236 land: 28.2 sq km

water: 0 sq km

Area - comparative:

less than one-sixth the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries:

total: 0.34 km

regional border: China 0.34 km


41 km

Maritime claims:

not specified


subtropical; marine with cool winters, warm summers


generally flat

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: South China Sea 0 m

highest point: Coloane Alto 172 m

Natural resources:

Land use:

arable land: 0%

permanent crops: 0%

other: 100% (2005)

Irrigated land:

Natural hazards:


Environment - current issues:

Environment - international agreements:

party to: Marine Dumping (associate member), Ship Pollution (associate member)

Geography - note:

essentially urban; an area of land reclaimed from the sea measuring 5.2 sq km and known as Cotai now connects the islands of Coloane and Taipa; the island area is connected to the mainland peninsula by three bridges

People ::Macau


567,957 (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 167

Age structure:

0-14 years: 16.1% (male 47,853/female 42,019)

15-64 years: 76.2% (male 199,593/female 227,010)

65 years and over: 7.7% (male 20,245/female 23,126) (2010 est.)

Median age:

total: 35.6 years

male: 36.3 years

female: 35 years (2010 est.)

Population growth rate:

0.89% (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 129

Birth rate:

8.98 births/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 210

Death rate:

3.6 deaths/1,000 population (July 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 214

Net migration rate:

3.52 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 26


urban population: 100% of total population (2008)

rate of urbanization: 0.7% annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

Sex ratio:

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.14 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 0.88 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.88 male(s)/female

total population: 0.92 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Infant mortality rate:

total: 3.2 deaths/1,000 live births country comparison to the world: 217 male: 3.36 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 3.04 deaths/1,000 live births (2010 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:

total population: 84.38 years country comparison to the world: 2 male: 81.42 years

female: 87.49 years (2010 est.)

Total fertility rate:

0.91 children born/woman (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 224

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:

HIV/AIDS - deaths:


noun: Chinese

adjective: Chinese

Ethnic groups:

Chinese 94.3%, other 5.7% (includes Macanese - mixed Portuguese and
Asian ancestry) (2006 census)


Buddhist 50%, Roman Catholic 15%, none or other 35% (1997 est.)


Cantonese 85.7%, Hokkien 4%, Mandarin 3.2%, other Chinese dialects 2.7%, English 1.5%, Tagalog 1.3%, other 1.6% (2001 census)


definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 91.3%

male: 95.3%

female: 87.8% (2001 census)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):

total: 14 years

male: 15 years

female: 14 years (2008)

Education expenditures:

2.2% of GDP (2008) country comparison to the world: 166

Government ::Macau

Country name:

conventional long form: Macau Special Administrative Region

conventional short form: Macau

local long form: Aomen Tebie Xingzhengqu (Chinese); Regiao Administrativa Especial de Macau (Portuguese)

local short form: Aomen (Chinese); Macau (Portuguese)

Dependency status:

special administrative region of China

Government type:

limited democracy

Administrative divisions:

none (special administrative region of the People's Republic of China)


none (special administrative region of China)

National holiday:

National Day (Anniversary of the Founding of the People's Republic of China), 1 October (1949); note - 20 December 1999 is celebrated as Macau Special Administrative Region Establishment Day


Basic Law, approved on 31 March 1993 by China's National People's
Congress, is Macau's charter

Legal system:

based on Portuguese civil law system


direct election 18 years of age for some non-executive positions, universal for permanent residents living in Macau for the past seven years; indirect election limited to organizations registered as "corporate voters" (257 are currently registered) and a 300-member Election Committee drawn from broad regional groupings, municipal organizations, and central government bodies

Executive branch:

chief of state: President of China HU Jintao (since 15 March 2003)

head of government: Chief Executive Fernando CHUI Sai-on (since 20 December 2009)

cabinet: Executive Council consists of 1 government secretary, 3 legislators, 4 businessmen, 1 pro-Beijing unionist, and 1 pro-Beijing educator (For more information visit the World Leaders website ) elections: chief executive chosen by a 300-member Election Committee for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 26 July 2009 (next to be held in July 2014)

election results: Fernando CHUI Sai-on elected in 2009 with 282 votes, took office on 20 December 2009

Legislative branch:

unicameral Legislative Assembly (29 seats; 12 members elected by popular vote, 10 by indirect vote, and 7 appointed by the chief executive; members to serve four-year terms)

elections: last held on 20 September 2009 (next to be held in September 2013)

election results: percent of vote - UPD 14.9%, ACUM 12%, APMD 11.6%, NUDM 9.9%, UPP 9.9%, ANMD 7.8%, UMG 7.3%, MUDAR 5.5%, others 21.1%; seats by political group - UPD 2, ACUM 2, APMD 2, NUMD 1, UPP 1, ANMD 1, UMG 1, MUDAR 1; 10 seats filled by professional and business groups; 7 members appointed by the chief executive

Judicial branch:

Court of Final Appeal in Macau Special Administrative Region

Political parties and leaders:

Alliance for Change or MUDAR; Macau Development Alliance or NUDM
[Angela LEONG On-kei]; Macau-Guangdong Union or UNG; Macau United
Citizens' Association or ACUM [CHAN Meng-kam]; New Democratic Macau
Association or APMD [Antonio NG Kuok-cheong]; New Hope or NE [Jose
Maria Pereira COUTINHO]; Union for Promoting Progress or UPP [LEONG

note: there is no political party ordinance, so there are no registered political parties; politically active groups register as societies or companies

Political pressure groups and leaders:

Civic Power [Agnes LAM Lok-fong]; Macau New Chinese Youth
Association [LEONG Sin-man]; Macau Society of Tourism and
Entertainment or STDM [Stanley HO]; Macau Worker's Union [HO
Heng-kuok]; Union for Democracy Development [Antonio NG Kuok-cheong]

International organization participation:

IHO, IMF, IMO (associate), Interpol (subbureau), ISO (correspondent), UNESCO (associate), UNWTO (associate), UPU, WCO, WTO

Diplomatic representation in the US:

none (special administrative region of China)

Diplomatic representation from the US:

the US has no offices in Macau; US Consulate General in Hong Kong is accredited to Macau

Flag description:

green with a lotus flower above a stylized bridge and water in white, beneath an arc of five gold, five-pointed stars: one large in the center of the arc and two smaller on either side; the lotus is the floral emblem of Macau, the three petals represent the peninsula and two islands that make up Macau; the five stars echo those on the flag of China

National anthem:

note: as a Special Administrative Region of China, "Yiyonggjun Jinxingqu" is official (see China)

Economy ::Macau

Economy - overview:

Macau's economy slowed dramatically in 2009 as a result of the global economic slowdown, but strong growth resumed in 2010, largely on the back of strong tourism and gaming sectors. After opening up its locally-controlled casino industry to foreign competition in 2001, the territory attracted tens of billions of dollars in foreign investment, transforming Macau into one of the world's largest gaming center. Macau's gaming and tourism businesses were fueled by China's decision to relax travel restrictions on Chinese citizens wishing to visit Macau. By 2006, Macau's gaming revenue surpassed that of the Las Vegas strip, and gaming-related taxes accounted for more than 70% of total government revenue. In 2008, Macau introduced measures to cool the rapidly developing sector. This city of nearly 570,000 hosted more than 21 million visitors in 2009. Almost 51% came from mainland China. Macau's traditional manufacturing industry has virtually disappeared since the termination of the Multi-Fiber Agreement in 2005. In 2009, total exports were less than US$1 billion, while gaming receipts were almost US$15 billion. By October 2010, gross gaming revenue had already reached US$19 billion for the year. The Macau government plans to tighten control over the opening of new casinos and strengthen supervision of local casino operations in 2011 and has introduced measures to diversify the economy. The Closer Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between Macau and mainland China that came into effect on 1 January 2004 offers Macau-made products tariff-free access to the mainland; nevertheless, China remains Macau's third largest goods export market, behind Hong Kong and the United States. Macau's currency, the Pataca, is closely tied to the Hong Kong dollar, which is also freely accepted in the territory.

GDP (purchasing power parity):

$18.47 billion (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 129 $18.14 billion (2008 est.)

$14.4 billion (2006)

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):

$22.1 billion (2009 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:

1% (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 181 12.9% (2008)

26% (2007)

GDP - per capita (PPP):

$33,000 (2009) country comparison to the world: 41 $31,800 (2008)

$28,400 (2006)

GDP - composition by sector:

agriculture: 0.1%

industry: 2.8%

services: 97.1% (2009 est.)

Labor force:

322,000 (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 163

Labor force - by occupation:

manufacturing: 4.9%

construction: 9.3%

transport and communications: 5.2%

wholesale and retail trade: 12.6%

restaurants and hotels: 13.6%

gambling: 14.2%

public sector: 6.6%

financial services: 2.1%

other services and agriculture: 31.5% (2009 est.)

Unemployment rate:

3.6% (2009) country comparison to the world: 30 3% (2008)

Population below poverty line:

Household income or consumption by percentage share:

lowest 10%: NA%

highest 10%: NA%

Inflation rate (consumer prices):

1.2% (December 2009) country comparison to the world: 26 8.6% (2008)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:

5.25% (31 December 2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 145 5.43% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of narrow money:

$3.831 billion (31 December 2009) country comparison to the world: 101 $3.099 billion (31 December 2008)

Stock of broad money:

$26.56 billion (31 December 2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 75 $23.78 billion (31 December 2008)

Stock of domestic credit:

$1.717 billion (31 December 2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 130 $847 million (31 December 2007 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:

$2.3 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

$NA (31 December 2007)

$413.1 million (2004 est.)

Agriculture - products:

only 2% of land area is cultivated, mainly by vegetable growers; fishing, mostly for crustaceans, is important; some of the catch is exported to Hong Kong


tourism, gambling, clothing, textiles, electronics, footwear, toys

Industrial production growth rate:

Electricity - production:

1.424 billion kWh (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 141

Electricity - consumption:

3.474 billion kWh (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 119

Electricity - exports:

0 kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - imports:

2.215 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Oil - production:

0 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 168

Oil - consumption:

16,000 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 136

Oil - exports:

0 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 184

Oil - imports:

9,294 bbl/day (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 140

Oil - proved reserves:

0 bbl (1 January 2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 144

Natural gas - production:

0 cu m (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 161

Natural gas - consumption:

91.3 million cu m (2009) country comparison to the world: 103

Natural gas - exports:

0 cu m (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 158

Natural gas - imports:

97.8 million cu m (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 66

Natural gas - proved reserves:

300,000 cu m (1 January 2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 103

Current account balance:


$950 million (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 153 $2 billion (2008); note - includes reexports

Exports - commodities:

clothing, textiles, footwear, toys, electronics, machinery and parts

Exports - partners:

Hong Kong 38.7%, US 17.9%, China 14.4%, Germany 4% (2009)


$4.5 billion (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 123 $5.4 billion (2008 est.)

Imports - commodities:

raw materials and semi-manufactured goods, consumer goods (foodstuffs, beverages, tobacco), capital goods, mineral fuels and oils

Imports - partners:

China 31.1%, Hong Kong 10.8%, Japan 8.1%, France 8%, US 6.2% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:

Debt - external:

$0 (2009) country comparison to the world: 198

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:

$13.6 billion (2008 est.) country comparison to the world: 77 $11.1 billion (#REF! est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:

$980 million (2009 est.) country comparison to the world: 74 $1 billion (2008 est.)

Exchange rates:

patacas (MOP) per US dollar - 7.985 (2009), 7.983 (2008), 8.011 (2007), 8.0015 (2006)

Communications ::Macau

Telephones - main lines in use:

168,903 (2010) country comparison to the world: 131

Telephones - mobile cellular:

1.109 million (2010) country comparison to the world: 144

Telephone system:

general assessment: fairly modern communication facilities maintained for domestic and international services

domestic: termination of monopoly over mobile-cellular telephone services in 2001 spurred sharp increase in subscriptions with mobile-cellular teledensity approaching 200 per 100 persons in 2010; fixed-line subscribership appears to have peaked and is now in decline

international: country code - 853; landing point for the SEA-ME-WE-3 submarine cable network that provides links to Asia, the Middle East, and Europe; HF radiotelephone communication facility; satellite earth station - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) (2010)

Broadcast media:

local government dominates broadcast media; 2 television stations operated by the government with one broadcasting in Portuguese and the other in Cantonese and Mandarin; cable and satellite TV services are available; 3 radio stations broadcasting, of which 2 are government-operated (2008)

Internet country code:


Internet hosts:

252 (2010) country comparison to the world: 189

Internet users:

270,200 (2009) country comparison to the world: 134

Transportation ::Macau


1 (2010) country comparison to the world: 218

Airports - with paved runways:

total: 1

over 3,047 m: 1 (2010)


2 (2010)


total: 413 km country comparison to the world: 198 paved: 413 km (2009)

Ports and terminals:


Military ::Macau

Military branches:

no regular military forces

Manpower available for military service:

males age 16-49: 150,712 (2010 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:

males age 16-49: 124,074

females age 16-49: 149,799 (2010 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:

male: 4,488

female: 3,900 (2010 est.)

Military - note:

defense is the responsibility of China

Transnational Issues ::Macau

Disputes - international:


Illicit drugs:

transshipment point for drugs going into mainland China; consumer of opiates and amphetamines


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