The SAR government has refused to comment on the recent economic freedom index published by the Heritage Foundation, which noted that both Hong Kong and Macau’s economic policies are controlled by Beijing.
In a statement issued Friday, the government stated that it “will not issue any comment regarding acts by the Heritage Foundation. […] The government notes the foundation had, since 2009, included Macau [by] its own initiative on its Index of Economic Freedom.”
The government reiterated that the administration has abided by the Basic Law of Macau in the maintenance of, respectively, the “One country, two systems” principle, the “Macau people governing Macau” principle and the exercise of a high degree of autonomy.
It added that the city has seen its economic development thrive with the support of the central government.
“The Macau SAR Government strongly opposes the spreading of groundless and baseless claims via the issuance of self-styled reports by overseas bodies,” they added.
The Washington-based think tank dropped both Hong Kong and Macau from the list this year – of which Hong Kong has topped the list for 25 years until 2019.
The institution claimed that while Hong Kong and Macau residents benefit from policies offering greater economic freedom than on the mainland, “developments in recent years have demonstrated unambiguously that those policies are ultimately controlled from Beijing.”
Developments in the two SARs that are relevant to economic freedom would be considered in the context of China’s evaluation within the index, the report added.