Hanscom Smith has been appointed the United States Consulate General in Hong Kong and Macau by the country’s Secretary of State Michael Pompeo. Incumbent Consul Kurt Tong, who took office in August 2016, is set to leave next month. The consulate disclosed in the press release that Tong is going to join the private sector. Smith previously served as Consul General in Shanghai, and is currently the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State responsible for China affairs. He has also worked at the American Institute in Taiwan. He has also been Director of the Office of Chinese and Mongolian Affairs at the Department of State, as well as in the Office of Japanese Affairs at the Department of State. He also served at the United States embassy in Beijing. Smith holds a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University, master’s degrees from the London School of Economics and Princeton University, and a certificate in political studies from Sciences Po in Paris. He speaks a total of five languages, among which is Mandarin.
Foreign exchange reserves edge up 0.2%
The Monetary Authority of Macao announced today that the preliminary estimate of the SAR’s foreign exchange reserves amounted to 164.3 billion patacas (USD20.36 billion) as of the end of May 2019. The reserves decreased by 0.2% from the revised value of MOP164.7 billion (USD20.39 billion) for the previous month. The foreign exchange reserves at end-May 2019 represented about 10 times the currency in circulation. Meanwhile, the trade-weighted effective exchange rate index for the pataca rose 0.94 points month-to-month and 4.45 points year-on-year to 106.8 in May 2019, implying that overall, the exchange rate of pataca grew against the currencies of Macau’s major trading partners.
UM prof collaborates on English literacy book
Barry Lee Reynolds, an assistant professor of English education at the University of Macau (UM), recently published an English-language literacy book, co-edited by Teng Feng from Hong Kong Baptist University. The book serves as a teaching material for Chinese learners who want to develop English literacy. According to the UM, the book is the result of more than two years of collaborative editorial work. With an emphasis on instruction, policy, practice, and assessment, it focuses on English literacy at the pre-primary/primary, secondary, and university levels, and discusses literacy policies in the region. The book notably features classroom applications that are contextualized for mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan.