Macau SAR Government pledges for free trade and investment
Secretary for Economy and Finance Tam Pak Yuen stressed that according to the basic law, Macau SAR has full international legal personality in international economic affairs and continue to enjoy, on our own, membership of the WTO fully committed to all our rights and obligation.
Mr. Tam today (19th) in Geneva presented the first Trade Policy Review Report of MSAR after the establishment of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Mr. Tam said that The SAR Government has focused on policies that strengthen economic fundamentals and promote long-run growth. "Judging from the latest available statistical information, the results are encouraging." he expressed. "For instance, the tourism sector has rebounded remarkably. Visitor arrivals hit a historical record of over 9 million in 2000, representing an increase of 20% over a year before, and manufacturing exports grew by 16% in the year 2000. The SAR's trade surplus amounted to MOP2.3 billion, an expansion of 78% compared to 1999."
Regarding the financial policy, Tam noted that the SAR's currency board system, via which the Macau Pataca (MOP) is pegged to the Hong Kong Dollar (HKD) and indirectly to the US Dollar (USD), has provided a relatively stable and highly predictable monetary environment which is necessary for Macau and its trading partners.
"In fact, we (Macau SAR) offered more than what we had been requested during the Uruguay Round negotiations. Macau, China¡¦s commitments were not only limited to those offers after the conclusion of the UR in 1994." Mr. Tam said, adding that Zero tariff is offered to other importing goods such as information technology products.
Meanwhile, Mr. Tam pointed out that the MSAR Government has been looking into new ways of how, and which, sectors under concession may be liberalized. These sectors included mobile telephony services, Internet services and satellite TV, adding that such a liberal stance was also extended to the air transport sector.
Mr. Tam stressed that the SAR Government would strive for creating a fair, free and transparent environment for trade and investment in the new millennium.
The delegation al so included the Permanant Representative and Vice representative of MSAR to WTO Raimundo do Rosá/;rio and Gabriela Cé/;sar, Acting Director of the Economic Service Bureau, Sou Tim Peng, Coordinator of the office for Legislative Affairs, Jorge Costa Oliveira, and other official in the area of tourism, economy, civil aviation, finances, public works and telecommunications.
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