The 28-member European Union said in a statement released last week it hopes that “further progress” will be made in the introduction of universal suffrage in Macau.
The European Commission made the remarks in its Annual Report 2013 on Macau. The report was released in Brussels on Friday.
According to the report, Macau’s political governance system has become “more democratic”, namely through the introduction of additional directly elected seats in the 2013 Legislative Assembly election.
“The EU hopes further progress will be made in this regard, eventually leading towards universal suffrage for electing the chief executive and the Legislative Assembly,” the report says.
The report also says that Brussels “is keen to work with Macau to strengthen the judiciary and improve the regulatory and institutional framework for doing business.”
The report also says that the increase in the number of lawmakers from 29 to 33 last year “was a modest but positive step towards strengthening the democratic basis” of Macau’s political system.
The report also says that “some concerns persisted [last year] about the state of press freedom and the government’s policy on journalists’ access to government information.”
According to the report, “the EU encourages the Macau authorities to pursue all necessary efforts to take action against the risks inherent in the gaming sector and stands ready to engage in exchanges on this.”
The report points out that “despite the government’s efforts, Macau’s economic structure has not significantly diversified over recent years.” ( macaunews/macaupost)