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Country Reports

Macao Country Report

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Risk Level

Low
Moderate
Elevated
High
Very High
Severe
Extreme

Overview

Executive Summary

Macau is a special administrative region of China with a high level of internal autonomy. It is currently the world's largest gaming market, with an income level near the global top. Macanese politics is generally pro-Beijing, with the opposition largely marginalised. Although gaming revenues have declined sharply since 2014 due to China's corruption crackdown, the government's strong fiscal position allows it to avoid cuts to social programmes and public sector salaries, and the stability of the incumbent administration is largely unshaken. The government has adopted preferential policies to encourage business development outside gaming, although gaming is likely to dominate the economy for the foreseeable future. Triad criminal groups are active in the gaming industry, but theyseldom threaten foreign businesses.

Last update: March 27, 2018

Operational Outlook

In September 2017, a Macau gaming company proposed a USD500-million cryptocurrency deal backed by former leader of the 14K triad in Macau, Wan Kuok-koi. A poor understanding of cryptocurrency, combined with the unpreparedness or regulators and the involvement of financiers with known connections to organised crime, underscore the precarious state of Macau's anti-corruption efforts. Nonetheless, growth in the gaming industry has exceeded expectations over the past 14 months. Casino Gross Gaming Revenue (GGR) experienced 16% growth in 2017. The infrastructure of the territory has been substantially upgraded since the return to Chinese sovereignty in 1991 and will continue to receive further investment from mainland China.

Last update: March 27, 2018

Terrorism

Terrorism risk is very low in Macao with no known groups operating in or from the territory.

Last update: March 27, 2018

War Risks

None of China's potential adversaries will probably target Macao in a military conflict, and Macao's government faces no violent domestic threats.

Last update: March 27, 2018

Social Stability

After Macao’s recovery from the economic recession in 2017, instances of labour unrest over unpaid salaries have subsided as of October 2017. Even though there are a few concerns regarding real estate prices, the overbearing entertainment industry and its hours, and government response to Typhoon Hato, there is generally less chance of radical thinking and any pro-democracy movements in Macao.

Last update: March 27, 2018