New residential mortgage loans (RMLs) approved by Macau banks increased 9.7 percent month-on-month, reaching MOP3.7 billion in December. 95.3 percent of these were extended to residents. In terms of value, new residential mortgage loans to residents and non-residents increased 7.1 percent and 116.6 respectively. Compared to a year ago, new approvals of RMLs witnessed an increase of 23.8 percent. New commercial loans (CRELs) increased by 74.4 percent month-on-month to MOP6.3 billion, 87.7 percent of which was granted to residents. On an annual basis, new approvals of CRELs rose by 172.7 percent. At the end of December, the outstanding value of RMLs reached MOP152.9 billion, an increase of 1.3 percent from one month earlier. The resident component made up 94.1 percent of the total.
Taxi caught fire on road, no injuries
A taxi was engulfed in flames last night at around 8 p.m. when it was running on the Avenida da Amizade near the Grand Prix Grand Stand. Information suggested that the driver and three passengers heard some unusual noises before the fire started. They were able to escape from the vehicle unharmed. The driver told TDM that he was first notified by another driver from behind of the taxi’s abnormalities. He then stopped on the side of the road and tried to combat the fire with an extinguisher, but the flames later reemerged. Firefighters later arrived at the scene and extinguished the fire. It is suspected that the incident was caused by a mechanical malfunction. The authorities had to shut down part of the Avenida da Amizade and re-route some of the traffic. The incident caused serious traffic congestion in the area.
UM’s postgraduate programs now open for application
The University of Macau’s PhD programs, master’s programs, and postgraduate certificate programs for the 2015/2016 academic year are now open for application. In the new academic year, UM’s Faculties of Arts and Humanities, Business Administration, Education, Law, Health Sciences, Social Sciences, Science and Technology, and the Institute of Chinese Medical Sciences will collectively offer more than 80 postgraduate degree and certificate programs.