Sexual harassment to become a crime

The MSAR’s Executive Council presented a bill last Friday to make sexual harassment a crime. Crimes of sexual harassment, including inappropriate physical sexual contact, will be subject to a maximum imprisonment of one year and 120 days. The revisions of the Penal Code include extending the law to cover victims who are 16 years of age or younger. The current law only covers children aged 14 or under. Those who are accused of sexual harassment of minors aged 18 or under will be sentenced to a maximum of three years imprisonment. Prison sentences could also reach a maximum of five years for crimes involving pornography with minors under 18, according to the Executive Council.

Gov’t considers subsidising export credit insurance users

The MSAR Government is considering subsidising firms engaged in Sino-Luso trade in order to encourage their use of the city’s future export credit insurance scheme, the Secretary for Economy and Finance Lionel Leong Vai Tac said yesterday. The establishment of the scheme was proposed by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during his recent visit to the city. According to the Secretary, the MSAR Government is still looking for insurers for the scheme and has received certain positive feedback. He hopes the scheme can be established as soon as possible and that the MSAR Government can achieve certain results related to the scheme in 2017.

GVA dips 21.9 pct in 2015

The city’s Gross Value Added of all economic activities declined by 21.9 per cent year-on-year in real terms in 2015 due to the substantial adjustment of Gaming & Junket Activities, according to the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC). In the year, the importance of the tertiary sector to the economy dropped from 94.9 per cent to 92.2 per cent, in which the share of Gaming & Junket Activities tumbled by 10.4 percentage points to 48 per cent. Meanwhile, the share of the secondary sector rose from 5.1per cent to 7.8 per cent, with Construction growing 2.4 percentage points year-on-year to 6.5 per cent.

TaxiGo service serves 17,000 in three months

Local taxi-hailing application TaxiGo has successfully provided services by 300 local taxi drivers to around 17,000 clients since its operation from September 1, according to statements made by application founder Kyle Ho to Portuguese language newspaper Tribuna de Macau.
Mr. Ho, who is also Chief Strategy Officer of TaxiGo, said the service has registered “satisfactory” results so far and that the company was in discussions with the Monetary Authority of Macau (AMCM) regarding WeChat e-payments. He added that the company is considering expanding its operation to Zhuhai. Nevertheless, according to Mr. Ho, the service has faced some challenges due to the high rates of traffic congestion in Macau and rather low number of English-speaking taxi drivers affecting successful pick-ups.

CE to announce 2017 Policy Address on November 15

The Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On will announce the city’s Policy Address for the Fiscal Year 2017 on November 15 at the Legislative Assembly (AL), according to a press release published by the AL yesterday. The CE will take questions from legislators regarding the 2017 Policy Address at a Q&A session to be held the following day. Ella Lei Cheng I, vice-president of the Macao Federation of Trade Unions (FOAM) said on Monday that the CE had already confirmed the city’s social welfare benefits for next year would not be lower than that of this fiscal year.

Mozambican prosecutor-general visits MSAR

The Prosecutor-General of the Republic of Mozambique Beatriz Buchili arrived in the MSAR on Monday with her delegation, for a seven-day trip in the city. The Mozambican team will hold discussions with the MSAR government and exchange experiences relating to the judicial systems of the two places. The meetings will include discussions about the judicial progress in combatting crimes, administrative and judicial management, as well as training institutions. According to a press release from the Macau Prosecutor’s Office, the two parties have reached a consensus on strengthening contacts and enhancing co-operation. The Mozambican officials will later visit local judicial institutions such as the Court of Final Appeal. They will also pay a visit to Guangdong Province from October 27 to 28 before they complete their visit on October 29.

LRT Peninsula route determined by year-end

The plan for the Macau Peninsula section of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) will be determined by the end of this year, said Secretary for Transport and Public Works Raimundo Arrais do Rosário on Wednesday after attending the opening ceremony of the 2016/17 Judicial Year. Despite the government concluding public consultations on its three proposals for the Peninsula route in 2014, no plan for the sector has yet been confirmed. The Secretary added on Wednesday that the government would publicly announce the Peninsula plan once it is determined, urging the community to “have a bit more patience,” according to local broadcaster TDM Radio. The government is expecting the Taipa sector of the LRT to be completed in 2019.

Residents aged 75 or over may receive Provident Fund today

The city’s elderly - aged 75 or over - will receive their requested withdrawals of pensions from their Provident Fund accounts by bank transfer today, according to a press release by the Social Security Fund. As of October 14, the Fund had received 50,000 applications for withdrawal from the Provident Fund account, of which 20,996 were submitted by those aged 75 or over and those receiving disability pensions for over one year have been approved.
Eligible Provident Fund account owners may apply to withdraw their pensions from the account once a year. The Fund said it would transfer requested-and-approved withdrawals to those aged between 65 and 74 as soon as November 22.