CE discusses multi-regional and maritime cooperation during Beijing meetings

Chief Executive, Mr Chui Sai On, meets with the Minister of General Administration of Customs, Mr Yu Guangzhou, in Beijing.

The Government is looking forward to closer, multi-regional cooperation with the mainland in order to develop Macao’s maritime economy. Such cooperation is a strategic step to boost further Macao’s economic diversification and sustainability. The Chief Executive, Mr Chui Sai On, made the comments today in a meeting in Beijing with the Minister of the General Administration of Customs, Mr Yu Guangzhou. Mr Chui is on a four-day visit to Beijing. He will attend tomorrow’s opening of the 4th Session of the 12th National People's Congress. In today’s meeting, Mr Chui stated that Macao’s unique cultural heritage; tourism attractions and commercial links to the Portuguese-speaking countries would help the city take a more prominent role in the development of the nation’s “Belt and Road” initiative. This refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. Mr Chui sincerely thanked Minister Yu for his department’s support during the process of demarcating Macao’s 85-square-kilometres of waters. The clear definition of such boundaries was an important step in furthering Macao’s economic and social development, said Mr Chui. Minister Yu spoke highly of the Macao Government’s cooperation in the process of updating the divisional map of the Macao Special Administrative Region. The next phase of work would include optimisation of relevant legislation so as to ensure effective enforcement of the rule of law along the coast between the mainland and Macao. An agreement regarding enhancement of law enforcement was expected to be endorsed this year, Minister Yu stated. Such an agreement would serve as a foundation when drafting further judicial cooperation and setting up cooperation mechanisms in other areas of shared responsibility, he added. The Vice Minister of the General Administration of Customs, Mr Sun Yibiao; and Macao’s Secretary for Security, Mr Wong Sio Chak; along with the Director-General of the Macao Customs Service, Mr Vong Iao Lek; and the Director of the Representative Office of the Macao SAR in Beijing, Ms Hong Wai, were present in the meeting. Later in the day, Mr Chui had a meeting with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Wang Yi. Officials of that Ministry that were present at the meeting included the Director-General of the Department of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Affairs, Mr Feng Tie; and one of the Deputy Directors-General, Mr Hou Yue. Macao’s Secretary for Economy and Finance, Mr Leong Vai Tac; Mr Wong Sio Chak and Mr Vong Iao Lek also attended the meeting. The Chief Executive briefed those attending the meeting on the current development of Macao. He stated the Government would continue efforts – in line with guidance from the Central Government – to transform Macao into a world centre of tourism and leisure, and into a commercial and trade cooperation service platform between China and Portuguese-speaking countries. The initiatives are known collectively as the “Centre and Platform” policies. The Government would use its best efforts in supporting the organisation of the 5th Ministerial Meeting of the Forum for Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries, an event to be held in Macao later this year. Minister Wang said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs would give full support to the task of maintaining Macao’s stability, and to implementing the principles of “One country two systems” and “Macao people governing Macao”. The Ministry would support Macao in its efforts to organise the Ministerial Meeting of the Forum for Economic and Trade Cooperation between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries, he added. Mr Chui also discussed – in a meeting with the Secretary of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee, Mr Guo Jinlong – work relating to the cultivation and development of talent among Macao’s youth. Mr Chui proposed the creation of an interactive platform between Beijing and Macao in fields such as education, culture and sports. Such platform would initially cover projects in the fields of medicine and culture. The areas for cooperation under this platform would change annually. This would help Macao’s young people to have a better understanding of the nation and to take part in its development, said Mr Chui. Mr Guo expressed his support to the proposal. He said Beijing and Macao already had strong cooperation in areas such as, commerce, tourism and cultural exchanges. During the remainder of the year, the two cities would have the opportunity to increase such cooperation, in particular supporting young people and developing their potential, Mr Guo said. The delegation accompanying Mr Chui on his Beijing visit included: the Chief-of-Office of the Chief Executive’s Office, Ms O Lam; the Director of the Government Information Bureau, Mr Chan Chi Ping; and the Director of the Protocol, Public Relations and External Affairs Office, Mr Fung Sio Weng.

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