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Liaison office chief not worried about more businesspeople in legislature

Central People’s Government Liaison Office Director Bai Zhijian said Wednesday that more businesspeople in the newly-elected legislature than in the previous one would not cause the government’s future policies to lean towards the interests of the business community. According to The Macau Post Daily, he made the comments after attending the opening ceremony of the […]

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UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 5:53 am

Central People’s Government Liaison Office Director Bai Zhijian said Wednesday that more businesspeople in the newly-elected legislature than in the previous one would not cause the government’s future policies to lean towards the interests of the business community.

According to The Macau Post Daily, he made the comments after attending the opening ceremony of the two-day Global Tourism Economy Forum held at the Macau Tower Convention and Entertainment Centre.

When asked by reporters if the fact that more lawmakers representing business people’s interests have been elected to the new legislature for the next four years would skew government’s policies in their favour so that the interests of the general public might be ignored, Bai did not address the question directly but pointed out that there existed different channels for policy-making, including consultative bodies for different areas of civilsociety, which were able to collect opinions from society. He also said that as a result, the government’s policy-making would not be easily affected by the new membership of the Legislative Assembly.

Bai further said that law-making was a step-by-step process, in which a bill is first discussed in the legislature’s standing committees in detail after which it is voted on in a plenary meeting article-by-article, which he thought was a comprehensive process, so that before submitting a bill to the legislature the government would consider the interests of all sectors of society.

In addition, Bai said that the results of the direct legislative election this time, which elected more candidates with gaming-sector backgrounds than in the previous election, matched the actual situation.

Bai said that this was due to the fact that the number of employees in the gaming sector, whose voter turnout, he said, was higher than the turnout of the general public on Sunday, was increasing, combined with the fact that the overall turnout this year was lower than in the previous election.

Meanwhile, when asked if the number of Macau’s casino concessions was enough, Bai said that the government had firmly said that it would not grant any more licences.

Bai further said that the six gaming operators promised that they would include more non-gaming leisure facilities into their projects when they were bidding for licences but so far they had not done enough to achieve this.

He pointed out that more non-gaming leisure facilities could allow every family member including children to enjoy their holiday in gaming complexes, adding that the fact that the gaming operators are lagging behind in building non-gaming facilities was not in line with Macau’s strategy to become a global tourism leisure centre.(macaunews)

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 5:53 am

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