The findings of an annual survey about Macau conducted by the Public Opinion Programme (POP) of the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and released on its website yesterday show that – using a one-in-three choice method – political issues were of least concern to local residents, coming after economic and livelihood problems.
The findings show that 69 percent of 502 respondents were most concerned with livelihood problems and 24 percent with economic problems, while only four percent attached their greatest concern to political issues.
The survey was conducted by POP from December 1st to 3rd last year. A total of 502 Macau people were interviewed by means of a random telephone survey conducted by interviewers.
The survey found that using a one-in-three choice method, livelihood issues continued to be local people’s number-one concern followed by economic and then political issues. The pattern has existed for many years, the survey pointed out.
Regarding four “core social indicators” – prosperity, stability, freedom and democracy, the survey showed that, on a scale of 0-10, Macau’s degree of “prosperity” scored the highest rating with 7.22 points, followed by “stability” with 7.20 points, and then “freedom” and “democracy”, with 6.71 and 5.51 points respectively.
Among the ratings of the four “core social indicators” the marks given to “prosperity” dropped significantly, the marks given to “freedom” dropped to a record low since 2001 and the marks given to “stability” remained the same, while the marks given to “democracy” rose slightly but remained at the bottom.
The survey also found that concerning residents’ appraisal of Macau’s news media, on a scale of 0-10, the credibility rating was just 5.20 marks, dropping to a record low since 2003.
Compared with the previous survey, Macau people’s “net trust” in the Macau government and the central government both dropped, recording positive 32 and 33 percentage points respectively. The latter is a record low since the city’s 1999 change in administration, the survey found, pointing out that regarding the city’s confidence indicators, locals’ confidence in the future of Macau, the future of the nation, and the principle of “one country, two systems” have all remained positive, but their “net values” continued to drop, to positive 53, 66 and 46 percentage points respectively.
Among them, the “net belief” in Macau’s future and “one country, two systems” have dropped to an all-time low since the 1999 establishment of the Macau Special Administrative Region (MSAR). In terms of ethnic identity, the survey found that Macau people’s identification ratings of “Macau citizen” and “Chinese citizen” remained stable from a year earlier, at 8.0 and 7.7 marks.
All in all, POP concluded that its survey showed that Macau people are less positive than in previous years about Macau’s development.