The Chief Executive, Mr Chui Sai On, highlighted today Macao’s pivotal role in the friendly relations between China and Portugal, adding that the city was in a privileged position to help advance cooperation between the two sides.
The Government of the Macao Special Administrative Region (SAR) hosted today a welcome reception in honour of the President of the Portuguese Republic, Mr Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who was in Macao for a two-day visit.
In a speech at the event, Mr Chui stressed that the Macao SAR Government had always paid great attention to the bilateral relations between Macao and Portugal, noting that the close and friendly ties between the two sides would also help strengthen Macao’s bridging role between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries.
Leveraging on the strong links between Macao and Portugal and benefiting from the continued support from the Central Government, Macao had been making full use of its inherent strengths in order to develop further as a commercial and trade cooperationservice platform between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries (known as the “Platform” policy), said Mr Chui.
The Chief Executive provided further detail regarding the Macao SAR Government’s efforts in realising the city’s strategic goals, namely to position Macao as: a business and trade service centre for small- and medium-sized enterprises from Portuguese-speaking countries; a distribution centre for Portuguese-speaking countries’ goods; and a convention and exhibition centre for economic and trade cooperation between China, Macao and the Portuguese-speaking countries.
These efforts were aimed at creating the necessary conditions for all of those involved to grasp the vast opportunities available under the cooperation between China, Portugal and other Portuguese-speaking countries.
The Chief Executive also mentioned the Macao SAR Government’s strategies to promote further the business links between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries, via Macao’s involvement in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area initiative. He also detailed some of the Macao SAR Government’s supportive services to help Chinese enterprises establish business ties with Portuguese-speaking countries.
The Chief Executive additionally spoke of Portugal’s support to the “Belt and Road” initiative. Macao, as a key city in that initiative, would spare no efforts in giving full play to its roles in relation to Platform policy and to the Forum for Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries, in order to advance cooperation on economic affairs, science and technology innovation.
When reviewing the bilateral ties between Macao and Portugal, the Chief Executive made reference to the results achieved via the five meetings held so far under the Macao-Portugal Joint Committee mechanism since the body was established in 2011. The next meeting is scheduled for later this month, during Mr Chui’s visit to Portugal.
In his speech, Mr Chui stressed that the Macao SAR Government would, as always, respect the respective cultures and customs of the different communities living in Macao; continue to support the promotion locally of Portuguese language; and contribute to expand cultural exchanges between China and Portugal.
Speaking at the same event, the President of the Portuguese Republic expressed his gratitude for the warm hospitality of the Macao SAR Government.
Before arriving in Macao, Mr Rebelo de Sousa visited Beijing, where he participated in the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. His attendance at the forum and his visit to Macao were proof of the strong ties between Portugal and China.
Portugal and Macao had long and close historic relations, providing the right conditions for a prosperous future of cooperation, said Mr Rebelo de Sousa. He hoped the two sides would press ahead regarding cooperation in several areas, including the promotion in Macao of Portuguese language, economic and trade matters, investment, and tourism. Closer cooperation in those fields would also enhance Macao’s bridging role between China and Portuguese-speaking countries, added the Portuguese President.
After the reception, the Portuguese President departed Macao, concluding his visit to China. In the afternoon, Mr Rebelo de Sousa attended a reception held at the official residence of the Consul-General of Portugal in Macao, with the presence of members of the Portuguese community residing in the city. He also visited the Macau Portuguese School and the Consulate General of Portugal in Macao.View gallery