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Map of Macau

Macau (/məˈk/ (About this sound listen)), also spelled Macao, is an autonomous city region on the western side of the Pearl River estuary in China. Macau is bordered by the city of Zhuhai in mainland China to the north and the Pearl River Delta to the east and south. Hong Kong lies about 64 kilometres (40 mi) to its east across the Delta. With a population of 650,900 living in an area of 30.5 km2 (11.8 sq mi), it is the most densely populated region in the world. A former Portuguese colony, it was returned to Chinese sovereignty on 20 December 1999.

Macau was administered by the Portuguese Empire and its inheritor states from the mid-16th century until late 1999, when it constituted the last remaining European colony in Asia. Portuguese traders first settled in Macau in the 1550s. In 1557, Macau was leased to Portugal from Ming China as a trading port. The Portuguese Empire administered the city under Chinese authority and sovereignty until 1887, when Macau became a colony through a mutual agreement between the two countries. Sovereignty over Macau was transferred back to China on 20 December 1999. The Joint Declaration on the Question of Macau and Macau Basic Law stipulate that Macau operate with a high degree of autonomy until at least 2049, fifty years after the transfer.

Under the policy of "one country, two systems", the Chinese government is responsible for military defense and foreign affairs while Macau maintains its own legal system, public security force, monetary system, customs policy and immigration policy. Macau participates in international organizations and events that do not require members to possess national sovereignty.

Macau is a resort city in Southern China, known for its casinos and luxury hotels. Its gaming revenue has been the world's largest since 2006, with the economy heavily dependent on gaming and tourism. According to The World Factbook, Macau has the fourth highest life expectancy in the world. Moreover, it has a very high Human Development Index, ranking 18th in the world. Macau is among the world's richest regions and its GDP per capita by purchasing power parity is higher than that of any country in the world, according to the World Bank.

In the news

Macao Grand Lisboa

Selected biography

Stanley Ho
Born (1921-11-25) November 25, 1921 (age 96)
Occupation Entrepreneur
Net worth Increase $7.0 Billion USD

Stanley Ho, GBS (born November 25, 1921), also known as Ho Hung-sun, Stanley Ho Hung-sun (Chinese: 何鴻燊; pinyin: Hé Hóngshēn), is an entrepreneur in Hong Kong and Macau. Ho is sometimes nicknamed "The King of Gambling", reflecting the government-granted monopoly he held of the Macau gambling industry for over 35 years.

Ho is the wealthiest person in Macau, and one of the wealthiest in Asia. According to Forbes, he tied for 104th rank among the world's richest people in 2007, with an estimated net worth of $7.0 Billion USD. He owns many properties in both Hong Kong and Macau and has taken part in many kinds of business including entertainment, tourism, shipping, real estate, banking, and air transport.

As for his businesses, their income constitutes about one-third of the gross domestic product of Macau; in 2003, taxes on them accounted for about 30% of the Macau government's revenue; and they are collectively the largest corporate employer in Macau, with more than ten thousand employees.

Apart from Hong Kong and Macau, he has also invested in mainland China, Portugal, North Korea, Vietnam and the Philippines.

Ho is also a famous industrialist and entrepreneur in Asia, and he held a number of important positions in many firms in Hong Kong and Macau. His opinions and statements on Hong Kong's estate and commercial development have considerable sway on the market. Read more...

Related portals

Selected picture

Gondola ride in the Venetian
A Gondola ride in the Venetian, Macao

Image credit: Michael180

Did you know...

Macau Tower edit1.JPG
  • ... that the Macau Tower's tethered "skyjump" and Bungy Jump by world renowned A J Hackett from the tower's outer rim is the highest in the world??
  • ... that a casino in Macau is supposed to have the world's first underwater casino, with sharks / fish swimming around above the gamblers?
  • ... that Sands Macao itself contains 740 table games which is more than any other single casino in the world?
  • ... that Venetian Macao is modeled on its sister casino resort – The Venetian in Las Vegas – and is the largest single structure hotel building in Asia and the fifth-largest building in the world?
  • ... that Ponte 16 may create an underwater tunnel from mainland China as an additional entry-point for mainlanders into Macau?



Selected article

The Venetian Macao is a casino resort in Macau, China owned by the Las Vegas Sands hotel-casino chain. The Venetian is a 40-storey, $1.8 billion anchor for the 7 resort hotels which are under construction on the Cotai Strip in Macau. The 10,500,000-square-foot (980,000 m2) Venetian Macao is modeled on its sister casino resort – The Venetian in Las Vegas – and is the largest single structure hotel building in Asia and the second-largest building in the world.

The main hotel tower was finished in July 2007 and the resort officially opened on August 28, 2007. The resort has 3000 suites, 1,200,000 square feet (110,000 m2) of convention space, 1,600,000 square feet (150,000 m2) of retail, 550,000 square feet (51,000 m2) of casino space – largest in the world – with 3400 slot machines and 800 gambling tables and a 15,000 seat arena for entertainment/sports events. Read more...

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