Macao, China

General Information: Macao, colonized by the Portuguese in the 16th century, was the first European settlement in the Far East. In accordance with the treaty signed by China and Portugal on April 13, 1987, Macau received the status of a Special Administrative Region of China on December 20, 1999. According to existingcountries, China guaranteed, following its “one country, two systems” formula, that the Chinese socialist economy would not be introduced into Macau and that Macau would enjoy a high degree of autonomy in all matters except in the areas of foreign policy and defense.


Location: East Asia, located on the coast of the South China Sea and borders on China.
Geographical coordinates: 22° 10′ N. latitude, 113° 33′ E
Reference map: Southeast Asia.
Area: total: 21 km2; land surface area: 21 km2; water surface area: 0 km2
Comparative area: about 0.1 the area of ​​Washington, DC.
Land borders: total: 0.34 km; with neighboring states: with China 0.34 km.
Coastline: 40 km.
Maritime claims: not determined.
Climate: subtropical maritime with cool winds; summer is warm.
Terrain: mostly flat.
Maximum and minimum heights: lowest point: South China Sea 0 m; highest point: Coloane Alto 174 m.
Natural resources: negligible.
Land use: arable land: 0%; cultivated land: 2%; pasture: 0%; forests and plantations: 0%; others: 98% (1998 est.).
Irrigated land: no data.
Natural Hazards: Typhoons.
Current environmental issues: no data available.
International agreements on environmental protection:
Note to the section “Geography”: essentially a city; one causeway and two bridges link the islands of Coloane and Taipa with the peninsula on the mainland.


Population: 453,733 (July 2001 est.).
Age structure: under 14: 22.68% (male 53,291; female 49,615); 15 to 64 years old: 70.08% (male 150,538; female 167,431); over 65: 7.24% (male 13,287; female 19,571) (2001 est.).
Population growth: 1.79% (2001 est.).
Birth rate: 12.36 newborns / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Mortality: 3.71 deaths / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Migration: 9.25 people / 1000 people (2001 est.).
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male/female; up to 15 years: 1.07 male/female; from 15 to 64 years: 0.9 male/female; over 65: 0.68 male/female; for the general population: 0.92 male/female (2001 est.);
Child mortality: 4.47 deaths/1000 live births (2001 est.).
Life expectancy: for the general population: 81.69 years; men: 78.88 years; women: 84.64 years (2001 est.).
General birth rate: 1.31 children/wives. (2001 est.).
Proportion of the adult population infected with HIV: no data available.
Number of people infected with HIV: no data.
Mortality due to AIDS: no data available.
Nationality: noun: Chinese; adjective: Chinese.
Ethnic groups: Chinese 95%, Macau (mixed Portuguese and Asian), Portuguese, others.
Believers: Buddhists 50%, Catholics 15%, non-denominational and representatives of other religions 35% (1997 est.).
Language(s): Portuguese, Chinese (Cantonese).
Literacy: definition: persons aged 15 and over who can read and write; for the general population: 90%; men: 93%; women: 86% (1981 est.).


conventional long form: Macau Special Administrative Region;
conventional short form: Macau; local long form: Aomen Tebie Xingzhengqu (in Chinese); Regiao Administrative Especial de Macau (in Portuguese); local short form: Aomen (in Chinese); Macau (in Portuguese). Dependency State: Special Administrative Region of China.
State structure: no data.
Administrative division: none (Special Administrative Region of China).
Independence: none (Special Administrative Region of China).
National holiday: Nation’s Day, October 1 (anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, 1949); note – December 20, 1999 is the Establishment Day of the Macau Special Administrative Region.
Constitution: The Basic Law, adopted in March 1993 by the National People’s Congress, serves as Macau’s “mini-constitution”.
Legal system: based on the Portuguese civil law system.
Suffrage: for direct elections from the age of 18, universal for persons permanently resident in Macau for the past seven years; participation in indirect elections is possible only for organizations registered as “corporate voters” (there are currently 257 registered) and for the Electoral Committee, consisting of 300 members elected from various regional groups, municipal organizations and central government agencies.
chief of state: Chinese President JIANG Zemin (since March 27, 1993);
head of government: Chief of Staff Edmund HO Hau-wa.h (since 20 December 1999);
Government: an executive council composed of five government secretaries: three legislators and two businessmen; elections: no data.
Legislature: Unicameral Legislative Council (LEGCO) (23 seats; 8 members directly elected, 8 indirectly elected, and 7 appointed by the chief executive; term of office – 4 years); elections: last held 22 September 1996 (next to be held by 15 October 2001); election results: distribution of votes between parties – no data; number of seats – ARREM 2, UNIPRO 2, CODEM 1, UDM 1, UPD1.ANMD 1.
Judiciary: Superior Court of the Macau Special Administrative Region.
Political parties and leaders: this list includes associations that participated in the most recent legislative elections: Associacao de Novo Macau Democratico (ANMD) (leader – NA); Associacao Promotora para a Economia de Macau (ARREM) (leader – NA); Convergencia para o Desenvolvimento (CODEM) (leader – no data); Uniao Geral para o Desenvolvimento de Macau (UDM) (leader – no data); Uniao para o Desenvolvimento (UPD) (leader – no data); Uniao Promotora para o Progresso (UNIPRO) (leader – no data); note: there are no official political parties, instead of them there are associations of citizens.
Political influence groups and their leaders: the Catholic Church (Domingos LAM [Domingos LAM], bishop); Macau Society for Tourism and Leisure (STDM) (Stanley H.O., Managing Director); Union for the Advancement of Democracy (Antonio NG Kuok-cheong, leader).
Participation in international organizations: ССС, ESCAP (associate), IMO (associate), Interpol (sub-bureau), UNESCO (associate), WMO, WToO (associate), WTrO.
Diplomatic representation in the United States: none (Special Administrative Region of China).
US Diplomatic Representation: The US does not have a representation in Macau; US interests are monitored by the US Consulate General in Hong Kong.
Flag Description: light green with a lotus flower above a stylized image of a bridge and white water, under five golden five-pointed stars forming an arch: one large in the center of the arch and four smaller ones.


Economy overview: The economy is based mainly on tourism (including gambling), textiles and pyrotechnics. Attempts to develop other sectors led to the emergence of small industries such as toys, artificial flowers and electronics. Tourism revenues account for about 25% of GDP, the textile industry accounts for approximately 75% of export earnings; Gambling revenues are probably over 40% of GDP. More than 8 million tourists visited Macau in 2000. Macau depends on imports from China for most of its food, fresh water and electricity. Japan and Hong Kong are the main suppliers of raw materials and capital goods. In 1998, GDP fell by 5%, and in 1999 by 3%, but recovered slightly in 2000. Macau came under the control of the Chinese government on December 20, 2000.
GDP: at purchasing power parity – $7.82 billion (2000 est.).
Real GDP growth rate: 2% (2000 est.).
GDP per capita: at purchasing power parity – $17,500 (2000 est.).
The composition of GDP by sectors of the economy: agriculture: 1%; industry: 25%; services: 74% (2000 est.).
Proportion of the population below the poverty line: no data available.
Percentage distribution of household income or consumption: for the poorest 10% of households: n/a; by top 10% of households: no data.
Inflation rate at consumer prices: -1.8% (2000 est.).
Labor force: 283,450 people (1999).
Employment structure: industry 22%, restaurant and hotel business 26%, other services 52%.
Unemployment rate: 6.6% (2000).
Budget: revenues: $1.26 billion; expenditures: $1.22 billion, including capital expenditures of $175 million (1999 est.).
Spheres of economy: production of clothes, fabrics, toys, electronics, footwear, tourism, gambling.
Growth in industrial production: no data available.
Electricity generation: 1.355 billion kWh (1999)
Sources of electricity generation: fossil fuels: 100%; hydropower: 0%; nuclear fuel: 0%; others: 0% (1999).
Electricity consumption: 1.422 billion kWh (1999)
Electricity export: 3 million kWh (1999).
Electricity import: 165 million kWh (1999).
Agricultural products: rice, vegetables.
Exports: $2.6 billion (free on board, 2000 est.)
Exports: textiles, clothing, toys, electronics, cement, footwear, machinery.
Export partners: US 47%, EU 30%, China 9.2%, Hong Kong 6.7% (1999).
Imports: $2.4 billion (s.i.f., 2000 est.)
Imports: raw materials, foodstuffs, capital goods, fuels, consumer goods.
Import partners: China 36%, Hong Kong 18%, EU 13%, Taiwan 10%, Japan 7% (1999).
External debt: $1.7 billion (1997) Recipient of economic assistance: no data.
Economic aid donor:
Currency: pataca.
Currency code: MOR.
Exchange rate: MOP/USD – 8.033 (January 2001), 8.025 (2000), 7.99 (1999), 7.98 (1998), 7.99 (1997), 7.962 (1996); note – pegged to Hong Kong dollar at 1.03 pataka to Hong Kong dollar.
Fiscal year: calendar year.


Telecommunications Telephone lines: 176 837 (2000).
Mobile cellular telephones: 120,957 (2000).
Telephone system: quite modern facilities used for domestic and international communications; internal: no data; international: high-frequency radiotelephone communication; access to international communications is provided through Hong Kong and China; ground satellite stations – 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean).
Broadcast stations: AM – 0, FM – 2, shortwave – 0 (1998).
Radio receivers: 160,000 (1997).
Television Broadcast Stations: None (receives programs from Hong Kong) (1997).
TVs: 49,000 (1997).
Internet country code: mo
Internet service providers: 1 (2000).
Number of users: 40,000 (2000).


Transport Railways: 0 km.
Roads: total: 50 km; coated: 50 km; unpaved: 0 km (2001 est.).
Ports and harbours: Macau.
Merchant fleet: none (2000 est.).
Airports: 1 (2000 est.).
Airports with paved runways: total: 1; over 3,047 m: 1 (2000 est.).
Airports with unpaved runways:

Armed forces

Branches of the armed forces: The People’s Liberation Army of China (PLA) garrison in Macau is approximately 500 troops.
Total military manpower: male 15 to 49: 125,737 (2001 est.).
Eligible for military service: men aged 15 to 49: 69,191 (2001 est.). Military – note: On December 20, 1999, responsibility for the defense of Macau passed to China.

Macao, China