Reuters has confirmed that Chinese Leader Xi Jinping will announce measures aimed at transforming Macau's economy beyond just a megalopolis for gambling, entertainment and other pleasures.
The new measures will focus on, among others, the establishment of a yuan-denominated stock exchange, speeding up a yuan exchange center that is currently being developed, and allocating land to Macau, Reuters said, citing unidentified government officials and executives from companies.
The steps were meant to mark the twentieth anniversary of the return to Chinese rule of the former Portuguese colony, an event that will bring Xi closer to Macau, the study said.
The stock exchange would first concentrate on stocks and bond trading to encourage local and mainland companies to issue loans in the city, Reuters said.
China's Future Projects
The currency platform would also put premium on Portuguese-speaking startups and target companies to avoid direct competition with Hong Kong or Shenzhen, it reported, citing six Macau executives and Chinese officials.
Xi will also confirm the decision by Macau to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank headquartered in Beijing. Tourism and finance will be among the future priorities, and Macau will be used as a venue for hosting international meetings, an official told Reuters.
After the release, casino stocks jumped to session highs, reversing the declines seen in recent weeks after dismal results from November. Wynn Macau Ltd. led Thursday's sessions with a 4.7 percent increase.
The Macau Affairs Office in Beijing did not respond immediately to a faxed request for comment on Thursday. The Chief Executive Office of Macau also failed to respond to an email seeking comment.
Creating A High-Tech SuperCity
For a while, the plans might have been in the works. In October, the Securities Times reported that the Chinese central government had submitted a proposal for a securities exchange in Macau.
Authorities were investigating how to fit the advantages of Macau into the broader plan of Xi's Greater Bay Area to integrate the region together, the Security Times disclosed on Thursday.
The blueprint was unveiled in February for the long-awaited plan of China to create a high-tech megalopolis on its southern coastline that will rival the Silicon Valley of California.
Proposals include establishing a futures exchange with carbon emissions as the first commodity in Guangzhou and establishing a stock the market in Macau using the yuan currency.
Macau is trying to diversify its economy as growth slows in China and the high-rollers that have helped make the city look elsewhere as the world's largest gaming hub.