Forum Macao’s outreach strategy

Simultaneous support from the local and the central government are key for the commercial service platform between China and Portuguese-speaking countries to grow, says co-ordinator

The Macau SAR Government has strengthened the service reach of the Forum for Economic and Trade Co-operation between China and Portuguese-speaking countries (Macau), or Forum Macao, by implementing many areas and services to support the platform, while the central government is consolidating mechanisms framing the co-operation initiatives, according to Eco Chan, Co-ordinator of the Supporting Office to the Permanent Secretariat of the Forum.
Speaking to Business Daily on Friday on the sidelines of the closing ceremony of the 4th Symposium about Tourism, Conventions, and Exhibitions, organized by the Training Centre of the Forum, the co-ordinator pointed out that these two sectors “are very strong” in Macau and that “there is a lot of expertise and experience to share.”
Ms. Chan claimed further that “interest and the necessity to come to Macau and share the experience” has increased since the first symposium was organized four years ago.
This year, a total of 30 participants from the eight Portuguese-speaking countries attended the symposium from October 16 to 29.
“All [participants are] from very high, and middle-high management positions in the different government or institutions in these two areas,” explained Ms. Chan.
Macau acting as a platform for facilitating this type of initiative is a “major mechanism” deployed to “enlarge exchange” between China and Portuguese-speaking countries, highlighted Echo Chan.
The co-ordinator recalled that other mechanisms currently implemented by the central government to improve the Macau SAR’s role in that regard consist of the ministerial conferences, organized every three years, when ministries from China and Portuguese-speaking countries launch and approve action plans for the next three years, drawing on several areas of co-operation.
“From the very beginning, we had only seven, but now we have 20 areas, including investment, trade, health, and education, tourism as well,” she recalled.
Although the Forum’s action plans are open to up to 20 areas, Ms. Chan clarified that resources and strategies are allocated “according to the country and also according to China’s Macau platform-building strategy.”
In addition to the proper platform, several departments of the MSAR Government are collaborating in the development of the Forum in “teamwork” mode, Ms. Chan explained.
These will include mainly, but not exclusively, departments overseeing matters related to customs, culture, education, tourism, trade, and investment, and economy, young entrepreneurs, education for the different levels, and language training, according to Ms. Chan.
Dr. Xu Yingzhen is the current Secretary-General of the Permanent Secretariat of the Forum.