Today is Macau Special Administrative Region Establishment Day which commemorates the return of sovereignty of the People’s Republic of China (PROC) over Macau on December 20, 1999. Macau is one of the two special administrative regions (SAR) of the PROC, the other being Hong Kong.
Macau lies on the western side of the Pearl River Delta, bordering Guangdong province in the north and facing the South China Sea in the east and south. Macau has thriving industries such as textiles, electronics, and toys, as well as a notable tourist industry, which boasts a wide range of hotels, stadiums, restaurants, and casinos.
Portuguese traders first settled in Macau in the 16th century. Subsequently administered by Portugal until the 1999 handover, it was the oldest European colony in China. The Sino-Portuguese Joint Declaration and the Basic Law of Macau stipulate that Macau operates with a high degree of autonomy until at least 2049, 50 years after the transfer. Under the policy of “one country, two systems,” the Central People’s Government is responsible for the territory’s defense and foreign affairs, while Macau maintains its own legal system, police force, monetary system, Customs policy, immigration policy, and delegates to international organizations and events.
In Macau, the head of state is the Chief Executive. The Chief Executive appointed by the People’s Republic of China’s central government. The Chief Executive’s Cabinet is composed of five policy secretaries. He is advised by an Executive Council that has between seven and 11 members. Edmund Ho Hau Wah, a community leader and former banker, is the first China-appointed Chief Executive of the Macau SAR, having replaced General Vasco Rocha Vieira at midnight on December 20, 1999.
We congratulate the people and government of Macau Special Administrative Region headed by H.E., Chief Executive Fernando Chui, on the occasion of its National Day and congratulate our Republic of the Philippines Consulate in Macau headed by H.E., Consul General Danilo T. Ibayan, for this occasion. CONGRATULATIONS AND MABUHAY!