Macao’s preliminary balance of payments (BOP) for last year recorded a surplus of MOP 12.1 billion (US$1.52 billion), the Macao Monetary Authority (AMCM) has announced.
According to an AMCM statement on Friday, last year’s current account surplus amounted to MOP 142.8 billion, while financial non-reserve assets showed a net increase of MOP 83.5 billion.
In 2019, exports of goods decreased by 8.3 per cent year-on-year while imports of goods rose 0.7 per cent. As a result, the merchandise trade deficit widened from MOP 91.2 billion in 2018 to MOP 93.3 billion in 2019.
Service exports dipped 1.1 per cent, mainly due to falling exports of travel services, while service imports dropped 6.5 per cent. Therefore, the services account surplus fell from MOP 311.7 billion in 2018 to MOP 310.3 billion in 2019.
The primary income account, which reflects cross-border flows of factor income, recorded a net outflow of MOP 49.0 billion last year.
The secondary income account, which comprises current transfers between Macao residents and non-residents, recorded a net outflow of MOP 25.2 billion in 2019.
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 MOP 142.8 billion in 2019, down by MOP 6.4 billion from 2018.
Financial non-reserve assets registered a net outflow of MOP 83.5 billion in 2019, representing a decrease of MOP 16.1 billion compared to the net outflow in 2018.
Reserve assets in the financial account rose by MOP 12.1 billion as compared to a decrease of MOP 2.1 billion in 2018, reflecting an overall BOP surplus of MOP 12.1 billion in 2019.
Reserve assets in the financial account record the net change in Macao’s foreign exchange reserves held by the AMCM, the statement noted. Reserve assets, after price, exchange rate and other adjustments, rose by MOP 12.1 billion as compared to a decrease of MOP 2.1 billion in 2018, reflecting an overall BOP surplus of MOP 12.1 billion in 2019, according to the statement.