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Macao government mulls stronger support to young start-uppers: Chui

Tue, 9th Oct 2018

Chief Executive Chui Sai On said Monday that his government will study how to provide stronger support to young business start-uppers.

Chui made the remarks during a meeting with about 20 young start-uppers after attending the unveiling ceremony of a national co-working space at the Macao Young Entrepreneurs Incubation Centre in Nape.

Delivering a speech during yesterday’s ceremony, Francis Tam Pak Yuen, the chairman of the Parafuturo de Macao Investment and Development Limited which operates the incubation centre, said that his centre’s national co-working space was the first nation-level co-working space in Hong Kong and Macao, the establishment of which has been approved by the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST). The former secretary for economy and finance said that the co-working space’s establishment demonstrated the central government’s support of Macao’s innovation and entrepreneurship.

In addition to Chui, who chaired yesterday’s event, the meeting was also attended by his chief-of-cabinet O Lam, Secretary for Economy and Finance Lionel Leong Vai Tac, Economic Services Bureau (DSE) Director Tai Kin Ip, and Macao Young Entrepreneurs Incubation Centre Chairman Jose Chui Sai Peng – an indirectly-elected lawmaker and the chief executive’s cousin.

Chui said that his policy address for next year will lay out how the government will strengthen its support of Macao’s development in innovation and science and technology. He underlined that innovation is needed for Macao’s sustainable development and that it will help the city integrate into the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) and participate in the nation’s Belt and Road (B&R) Initiative.

Chui pledged that the government will continue supporting young people eager to start their own business. The chief executive said he understood that local young start-uppers have three major demands for the government’s stronger support. The first was that they want the government to continue its financial support to help young start-uppers, he said.

Chui said their second demand was that the government could speed up its administrative procedures in approving applications from young start-uppers for financial support.

The third was that local young start-uppers hope for the provision of more office space tailor-made for them, Chui said.

Chui also said that the government would study what policies it can formulate with the aim of providing stronger support to young local people who have already started their own business or are planning a start-up.

Concerning the government’s financial support for young start-uppers, the Economic Services Bureau is running the Youth Entrepreneurs Aid Scheme, offering up to 300,000 patacas in interest-free loans to applicants to be paid back within eight years. Local permanent residents aged between 21 and 44 whose firms have been operating in Macao for less than two years are eligible to apply.

(Macau News)