Macau’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 6.1 percent year on year in real terms in the third quarter, a marked slowdown compared to economic growth of 11.3 percent in the first quarter and 10.8 percent in the second quarter, the Statistics and Census Bureau (DSEC) said Thursday.
The third quarter was the fifth consecutive quarter of growth.
A DSEC statement said “the slowdown in economic growth was due to the high base of comparison in the third quarter of 2016 as the economy rebounded (at that time).”
According to the statement, external demand grew “robustly” in the third quarter, driving exports of services up by 14.6 percent year on year, of which exports of gaming services and other tourism services grew by 18.4 percent and 9.4 percent respectively.
The statement pointed out that domestic demand slackened due to a 25.1 percent drop in investment. However, private consumption expenditure “moderately” rose by 0.5 percent.
The bureau underlined that the city’s employment conditions and earnings remained steady in spite of a decrease in total employment in the third quarter.
Investment continued to slow in the July-September quarter. Gross fixed capital formation contracted by 25.1 percent year on year. The bureau attributed the contraction to the fact that private construction and equipment investments decreased by 35.7 percent and 4.5 percent respectively due to the gradual completion of large-scale tourism and entertainment facilities.
“Service trade became the major driving force for economic growth” in the third quarter, the statement said.
In the first three quarters, Macau’s economy grew by 9.3 percent year on year in real terms. GDP growth in the first half stood at 11 percent.
Meanwhile, according to a separate DSEC statement, the value of retail sales in the third quarter rose by 14.9 percent year-on-year to 16.18 billion patacas. The value of retail sales increased by 11.1 percent compared to the previous quarter.
Watches and jewellery accounted for 23 percent of the total value of retail sales, followed by goods in department stores (14.8 percent), adults’ clothing (13.0 percent), leather goods (11.6 percent) and goods in supermarkets (6.8 percent).
According to another DSEC statement released also Thursday, visitor arrivals last month increased by 7.9 percent year on year and 16.2 percent month to month to 2.88 million.
The statement attributed the increase to the National Day and Mid-Autumn Festival holidays in the first week of October.
In de first 10 months of 2017, visitor arrivals totalled 26.72 million, up by 4.6 percent year-on-year.