Group expects economy to remain stable next three months

The end of the year will bring an even higher number of events, which will bring additional energy into the economy – expected to be stable – the Macau Economic Association (MEA) has commented.

The group expected that the Prosperity Index will remain at stable in the coming three months, with a forecast score of 6.2.

Citing the IMF’s forecast that Macau will be the world’s leader in economic growth, the group hopes that Macau’s economy will be even better than the IMF forecast. The IMF has forecast that Macau will have a 74.4% economic growth year-on-year. This figure is the highest since 2002, when the IMF first made forecasts on Macau.

The past two months had index scores meeting expectations, but the indicators performed rather differently, the group said. In October, for example, despite gross gambling revenue (GGR) having performed well, activities had increased and tourist figures satisfactory, stock prices of the six local casinos and the Chinese Consumer Confidence Index were still low.

As such, the index scores for September and October were 6.0 and 6.2, which fit expectations, the group said.

Factors that may influence the pace of recovery include the high interest rate, the group said, adding that it is still unclear whether the rate will rise even further and how long the rate will remain high.

The high rate has driven the local non-performing loan ratio to 2.43% overall and 3.14% for non-residents.

Change in consumer spending, meanwhile, will also impact the prospects of local SMEs, which also requires monitoring.

In a report issued earlier this year by the Monetary Authority of Macau (AMCM), coupled with a low-base effect of comparison, Macau’s economy is expected to register robust growth in the remainder of 2023.

The bureau noted that Macau’s external demand will be supported by the steady economic recovery in neighbouring regions, “further unleashing strong pent-up demand for tourism services.”

“Rigorous promotional campaigns launched by the government and non-gaming events organised by the gaming concessionaires [will] boost the growth momentum of external demand,” it added.  

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