Macau’s gross domestic product (GDP) for the fourth quarter of 2014 decreased by 17.2 percent year-on-year in real terms, said the city’s Statistics and Census Service in an announcement on Friday.
It was mainly “owing to the significant decline in gross gaming revenue and shrinking visitor spending” during the period, added the government body.
It stated that GDP growth for the whole of 2014 was nearly flat – contracting by 0.4 percent in real terms.
Nonetheless, the body added that while visitor arrival numbers increased in the final three months of the year, actual non-gaming spending by tourists posted a double-digit decrease in the fourth quarter.
“Although the performance of other segments of the economy was comparatively good, the economy of Macau contracted by 17.2 percent in real terms in the fourth quarter on account of a 26 percent decline in exports of services,” said the statistics service.
The final quarter was weighed down by exports of gaming services tumbling by 28.9 percent year-on-year. Such exports fell 12.3 percent in the third quarter.
The Statistics and Census Service assumes the majority of gaming in Macau reflects expenditure made by visitors in the domestic market. Therefore, casino gross gaming revenue are officially considered an export although the services are rendered in Macau.
The statistics service said that when GDP was judged across the whole of 2014, the negative effects of decreasing exports of gaming and tourism services were “largely offset by the better performance of domestic demand”, resulting in the 0.4 percent full-year contraction.
For the whole of 2014, gross fixed capital formation rose “substantially” by 35.2 percent. Private consumption expenditure and total government consumption expenditure grew by 5.9 percent and 7.1 percent respectively.
GDP growth in real terms for the first three quarters of 2014 was revised to 13.1 percent, 8.0 percent and -2.3 percent respectively, said the statistics service. Economic growth for 2013 was revised to 10.7 percent.
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