Govt to spend 18.7 billion patacas on subsidies in 2019

2018-11-16 08:00     Comment:1

Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On announced in his 2019 Policy Address yesterday that his government will spend 18.75 billion patacas on subsidies, an increase of 45 percent from this year’s budget.

Chui also said in his nearly one-hour speech in the legislature’s hemicycle that it was Macau’s duty to protect the nation’s sovereignty, security and development interests, as well as the “grand mission to promote Macau’s lasting stability and prosperity.”

The 61-year-old chief executive delivered the policy address seated next to Legislative Assembly (AL) President Ho Iat Seng who some observers believe might succeed Chui when his second and constitutionally final consecutive five-year term ends in December next year.

The government’s wide range of subsidies covers the elderly, parents, people with disabilities and disadvantaged families, while some of the subsidies benefit all permanent and non-permanent residents.

Residents’ wealth-sharing cash handouts were increased by 11 percent from 9,000 patacas to 10,000 patacas for permanent and from 5,400 patacas to 6,000 patacas for non-residents permits. It was the first increase in the cash handout since 2014.

Senior residents’ pension was raised by 5.2 percent from 3,450 patacas to 3,630 patacas a month. However, the old-age allowance remained unchanged at 9,000 patacas per year.

The government’s birth allowance was increased by 260 patacas to 5,260 patacas. Both parents are entitled to apply at the same time, a government statement on Chui’s policy address pointed out.

Healthcare vouchers, to which only permanent residents are entitled, will remain unchanged at 600 patacas per person for next year.
Tax allowances & incentives

Chui also announced the continuation of a string of tax allowances and incentives, as well as several new ones: enterprises will enjoy a triple reduction in profit for the first 3 million patacas of joint venture research and development (R&D) expenditure, and a double reduction in profit tax for additional expenditure, subject to a ceiling of 15 million patacas; an 8 percent reduction in the property tax rate for leased properties; the personal tax allowance for eligible employees with disabilities will be increased to 198,000 patacas; waivers of profit tax on investment income from local bonds issued by the mainland authorities and state-owned enterprises (SOEs), and exemption from stamp duty for issuing and acquiring the respective bonds; and a profit tax waiver regarding local enterprises’ income received or generated in Portuguese-speaking countries.

Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On delivers his 2019 Policy Address in the hemicycle of the Legislative Assembly (AL) yesterday. Photo: GCS

Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On (left) and Legislative Assembly (AL) President Ho Iat Seng leave the legislature’s hemicycle together after yesterday’s 2019 Policy Address by Chui. Photo: Maria Cheang Ut Meng

Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On gives his customary post-policy address conference at Government Headquarters yesterday. Photo: GCS 

Seated next to Legislative Assembly (AL) President Ho Iat Seng (centre, right), Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On delivers his 2019 Policy Address in the legislature’s hemicycle yesterday. Photo: GCS


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