President Xi Jinping urged the local government and civil society Monday to study major problems that hinder Macau’s development despite the fact that it is currently enjoying sound growth, in order to lay the groundwork for its long-term development, The Macau Post Daily quotes a Xinhua report as saying today.
Xi made the remarks during a meeting with Macau Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On and his Hong Kong counterpart Leung Chun-ying at the Zhongnanhei compound in Beijing.
Xi pointed out that Macau is enjoying a “relatively good period” right now. However, according to Xinhua, he was quick to add that the city’s future development was also facing a string of challenges.
“I hope to enhance the sense of the Macau Special Administrative Region government and the community to take advantage of favourable timing and conditions, study to solve the outstanding problems that are restricting [Macau’s] development and to lay a solid foundation for Macau’s long-term development,” Xi was quoted by Xinhua as saying.
The president also told the two chief executives, who were in Beijing to attend Sunday’s closing ceremony of the first session of the 12th National People’s Congress (NPC), that the fate of Hong Kong, Macau and the mainland had always been closely linked.
Xi said that in order to achieve the nation’s rejuvenation and realise the “Chinese dream,” the mainland and the two special administrative regions should rely on mutual development and complementary advantages. He also urged all compatriots of the three places to help each other and work hand in hand.
According to Xinhua, the president also fully endorsed the work of the two chief executives and their respective governments.
Xi’s meeting with Chui and Leung was also attended by NPC Standing Committee Chairman Zhang Dejiang, Vice President Li Yuanchao and State Councillor Yang Jiechi.
The two chief executives also held a separate meeting with Premier Li Keqiang yesterday. Vice Premier Liu Yandong and Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office Director Wang Guangya also attended the meeting.
According to Xinhua, Li affirmed the important role played by the two special administrative regions in the nation’s overall development. He also said that Hong Kong and Macau were in a “critical period” of their respective development. He also said that the governments and residents of Hong Kong and Macau to “safeguard the central government’s authority,” Xinhua pointed out.
After the two top-level meetings, Chui told reporters in Beijing that the central government continued to support the “appropriately diversified development” of Macau’s economy, according to a statement released by the Macau Government Information Bureau (GCS) last night.
The statement quoted Chui as saying that both Xi and Li urged the local government and community to prepare for adversity in times of prosperity and to plan for the future. Chui said that the local government would continue to adhere to its policy of “preparing for adversity in times of abundance.”
Chui also said that his government would stick to its balanced budget and financial reserve policies.
He also said that both Xi and Li pointed out that there are some problems with the diversified development of Macau’s economy as a whole and that the two national leaders urged the local government to pay special attention to residents’ livelihood issues.
Chui also said that the president and premier stressed the importance of collaboration among the mainland, Hong Kong and Macau. Chui promised that the Macau government would further strengthen its two main co-operation projects with the mainland, namely the development of Hengqin Island in Zhuhai and Guangzhou’s Nansha district.
Chui and his entourage are slated to return to Macau today.(macaunews)