A survey jointly conducted by the Macau Polytechnic Institute (IPM) and the Macau Economic Association (AEM) last month shows that residents are most dissatisfied with transport, followed by the cost of living, living conditions, and the government.
This is markedly different from the results of a recent survey carried out by the Macau New Chinese Youth Association (ANJCM), in which respondents listed housing as the issue they are most dissatisfied with.
The findings of the IPM-AEM survey were released Thursday during a press conference at the IPM Gaming Teaching and Research Centre in Taipa. AEM President Joey Lao Chi Ngai said that researchers asked 1,004 locals aged 18 and over to rank their level of happiness, and also their level of satisfaction on various issues on a scale of 0 to 10.
The results show that for this year, local residents’ index of happiness is 6.99. Lao said that the index was relatively stable compared to previous years but was still lower than Hong Kong’s.
He also said that respondents gave transport their lowest satisfaction mark (4.37). They gave the cost of living a mark of 4.66, 5.42 for living conditions and 5.85 for the government’s performance.
Respondents gave high marks to their relationships with family members (7.81), followed by their personal health (7.32), social lives (7.11) and job prospects (7.02).
Lao said that nowadays more residents may spend more time on their daily commute, adding this could be the reason why respondents ranked transport lower than any other category affecting their level of satisfaction.
Media reports show that residents’ gripes about frequent traffic jams, insufficient taxis driven by greedy cabbies and overcrowded and infrequent buses have become all too common.
He suggested that companies should consider variable work schedules so that not everyone has to get to work and back at the same time. “[If] the government encourages companies to do that, I believe that problems related to transport can be solved,” said Lao.
The scholar also said that youths and young adults score the lowest level of happiness amongst all age groups, suggesting this may be due to the fact that they find it difficult to buy property. He also said while the rising cost of living was hitting low-income families particularly hard, the findings showed that the level of happiness for residents with a university education is lower than that of their lower educated counterparts.
Lao suggested this may be because people with higher educational backgrounds have higher expectations, which may not often come to fruition.(macaunews/macaupost)