Release of Macao SAR Balance of Payments

24 August 2020

Preliminary Estimate for 2019

The Monetary Authority of Macao (AMCM) releases today the preliminary balance of payments (BOP) statistics of Macao SAR for the reference year 2019.  The BOP, which comprises the current account, the capital account and the financial account, is a statistical statement that summarises the external transactions of an economy with the rest of the world.

In 2019, the overall BOP of Macao SAR preliminarily recorded a surplus of MOP12.1 billion. Of which, the current account surplus amounted to MOP142.8 billion and financial non-reserve assets showed a net increase of MOP83.5 billion.

Exports of goods decreased by 8.3% year-on-year while imports of goods (f.o.b.) rose by 0.7%.  As a result, the merchandise trade deficit widened from MOP91.2 billion in 2018 to MOP93.3 billion in 2019. Concurrently, service exports fell by 1.1%, mainly attributable to falling exports of travel services, while service imports also dropped by 6.5%.  Therefore, the services account surplus fell from MOP311.7 billion in 2018 to MOP310.3 billion in 2019.

The primary income account, which reflects cross-border flows of factor income, recorded a net outflow of MOP49.0 billion in 2019; of which, inflows and outflows went up from MOP56.2 billion and MOP105.8 billion in 2018 to MOP69.3 billion and MOP118.3 billion in 2019 respectively. The secondary income account, which comprises current transfers between Macao residents and non-residents, recorded a net outflow of MOP25.2 billion in 2019, marking an increase of MOP3.5 billion from the net outflow in 2018.

As the large invisible trade surplus offset the deficit in merchandise trade and the net outflows of primary and secondary income, the current account recorded a surplus of MOP142.8 billion in 2019, down by MOP6.4 billion from MOP149.2 billion in 2018.

Financial non-reserve assets registered a net outflow of MOP83.5 billion in 2019, representing a decrease of MOP16.1 billion compared to the net outflow in 2018.  Of which, direct investment continued to record a net inflow, rising from MOP20.0 billion in 2018 to MOP38.6 billion in 2019. Due to the significant increase in external securities investment of Macao residents (including individuals, the government and other legal entities but excluding Macao’s foreign exchange reserves) during the year, portfolio investment registered a net outflow of MOP126.7 billion in 2019, as against a net inflow of MOP35.8 billion in 2018.  Meanwhile, mainly attributable to the notable deceleration in the growth of other external assets of Macao residents during 2019, the net outflow of other investment shrank from MOP158.0 billion in 2018 to MOP0.3 billion in 2019.  On the other hand, financial derivatives continued to register a net inflow in 2019, totalling MOP4.8 billion.

Reserve assets in the financial account record the net change in Macao’s foreign exchange reserves held by the AMCM.  Reserve assets, after price, exchange rate and other adjustments, rose by MOP12.1 billion as compared to a decrease of MOP2.1 billion in 2018, reflecting an overall BOP surplus of MOP12.1 billion in 2019.

Macao’s BOP statistics are compiled in accordance with the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (Sixth Edition) of the International Monetary Fund.  The current release incorporates preliminary estimates of key statistics, and a detailed report with revised data will be published in December 2020.
(Monetary Authority of Macao)

Government Information Bureau: