Macau, China, 5 March – The European Commission has a positive opinion about Macau, but hopes that the State Security Law does not jeopardise the fundamental rights and freedoms of the territory, according to the commission’s annual report.
“The Commission hopes that the approval of the State Security Bill will not affect the fundamental right and freedoms of citizens as guaranteed by the Basic Law,” the mini constitution that rules life in the territory, the European Commission’s 2008 report reads.
In the report, published Wednesday, Macau was generally praised in terms of assessment of politics and economic development of the Special Administrative Region of China, but some notes were made about the need for “institutional and administrative reforms to ensure the greater transparency and responsibility of the Government.”
The European Commission considered that the “one country, two systems,” policy applied by China in Macau since 1999, has worked well and the way of life, unique society, fundamental freedoms and Rule of Law have been maintained.
In the document, the European Commission also praises the economic development that is the result of the liberalisation of gaming and the role that Macau plays as a bridge between China and Portuguese-speaking countries.
The Commission also noted that the justice system and application of the law worked well, providing the example of the prison sentence of former government member Ao Man long, who was sentenced to 27 years for corruption, money laundering and abuse of power.
In terms of Rights and Liberties, after the demonstration of 1st May, 2007, which ended in clashes between the police and demonstrators, the Commission noted the peaceful way in which various demonstrations had taken place in 2008.
With two electoral acts in 2009 – the Chief Executive and legislative Assembly – the Commission noted the Government’s aim of carrying out more transparent elections free from corruption, but left the “incentive” of introducing measures that make the electoral process more representative.
In Macau, The Chief Executive of the Government is chosen by an Electoral Commission that represents society but is chosen by associations. In the Legislative Assembly 12 of the 29 seats are elected directly by the population.