Release of Macao SAR Balance of Payments (Preliminary Estimate for 2017)

The Monetary Authority of Macao (AMCM) releases today the preliminary balance of payments (BOP) statistics of Macao SAR for the reference year 2017. The BOP, which comprises the current account, the capital account and the financial account, is a statistical statement that summarises external transactions of an economy with the rest of the world.

In 2017, the overall BOP surplus of Macao SAR was preliminarily estimated at MOP1.6 billion. Of which, the current account surplus stood at MOP134.5 billion and financial non-reserve assets showed a net increase of MOP111.5 billion.

Exports of goods increased by 12.4% year-on-year while imports of goods (f.o.b.) rose mildly by 0.2%. As a result, the merchandise trade deficit narrowed from MOP80.0 billion in 2016 to MOP78.7 billion in 2017. Meanwhile, service exports rose by 16.6%, mainly attributable to increasing exports of travel services, and service imports also grew by 15.1%. Therefore, the services account surplus rose from MOP231.2 billion in 2016 to MOP270.0 billion in 2017.

The primary income account, which reflects cross-border flows of factor income, recorded a net outflow of MOP32.8 billion in 2017, with inflows and outflows went up from MOP31.9 billion and MOP61.7 billion in 2016 to MOP41.3 billion and MOP74.1 billion in 2017 respectively; The secondary income account, which comprises current transfers between Macao residents and non-residents, recorded a net outflow of MOP24.0 billion, with inflows and outflows increased from MOP0.6 billion and MOP23.1 billion in 2016 to MOP1.8 billion and MOP25.8 billion in 2017 respectively.

As the large invisible trade surplus offset the deficit in merchandise trade as well as net outflows of primary and secondary income, the current account surplus totalled MOP134.5 billion, up by MOP35.7 billion from MOP98.8 billion in 2016.

Net financial non-reserve assets registered a net outflow of MOP111.5 billion in 2017, representing an increase of MOP11.2 billion compared to the net outflow in 2016. Of which, a net outflow of direct investment amounting to MOP18.7 billion was recorded in 2017, contrary to a net inflow of MOP10.5 billion in 2016, mainly as direct investment liabilities decreased markedly. Due to the significant increase in external securities investment held by Macao residents (including individuals, Macao SAR Fiscal Reserve and financial institutions), the net outflow of portfolio investment rose notably from MOP24.4 billion in 2016 to MOP81.0 billion in 2017. Meanwhile, local banks’ external liabilities registered considerable increases during 2017; the net outflow of other investment thus dropped from MOP83.7 billion in 2016 to MOP14.4 billion in 2017. On the other hand, financial derivatives registered a net inflow of MOP2.5 billion in 2017, as against a net outflow of MOP2.8 billion in 2016.

Reserve assets in the financial account record the net change in Macao’s foreign exchange reserves held by the AMCM. Reserve assets, after price, exchange rate and other adjustments, rose by MOP1.6 billion in 2017 as compared to an increase of MOP3.5 billion in 2016, reflecting that the overall BOP stayed in surplus.

Macao’s BOP statistics are compiled in accordance with the International Monetary Fund’s Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (Sixth Edition). The current release incorporates preliminary estimates of key statistics, and a detailed report with revised data will be published in December 2018.

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