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Macao’s GDP reached 80 percent of its pre-pandemic level in 2023

Tourism’s return saw a surge in gross domestic product – though goods exports fell by almost 30 percent, year-on-year.

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Macao’s economy grew by 80.5 percent last year, with per capita gross domestic product (GDP) reaching 560,000 patacas (US$69,700), according to preliminary data released yesterday by the Statistics and Census Service (known by its Portuguese initials DSEC).

The surge in growth, attributed primarily to the return of tourism, saw GDP hit 80 percent of the level attained in 2019 – the last full year before Covid-19 restrictions put an effective chokehold on Macao’s biggest industry for three years.

Exports of gaming services and other tourism services grew by 344 and 128 percent respectively in 2023, DSEC noted in its statement – boosts underpinned by the 395 percent year-on-year increase in visitor arrivals. Exports of goods, meanwhile, fell by 28 percent in 2023.

[See more: Macao has been ranked fifth in a list of the world’s richest territories]

Macao residents spent more money in 2023 than they did in 2022, with private consumption expenditure rising by 12 percent. They also invested in more assets: fixed capital formation rose by almost 15 percent.

The government’s final consumption expenditure dropped by more than 6 percent due to the conclusion of the livelihood subsidy scheme.

Analysed by quarter, GDP for the final three months of the year was up 86 percent when compared with the same period in 2022.

The Macau Economic Association has forecast GDP growth of 10 percent for 2024. Fitch Ratings has issued a more optimistic prediction of 15 percent growth.

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