FATF AML Deficiency List


Higher Risk

US Dept of State Money Laundering assessment
Offshore Finance Center
World Governance Indicators (Average Score)

Medium Risk

Corruption Index (Transparency International & W.G.I.)

Weakness in Government Legislation to combat Money Laundering




FATF Status

Macau is not on the FATF List of Countries that have been identified as having strategic AML deficiencies


Compliance with FATF Recommendations

The follow-up Mutual Evaluation Report relating to the implementation of anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing standards in Macau was undertaken in 2019. According to that Evaluation, Macau was deemed Compliant for 22 and Largely Compliant for 18 of the FATF 40 Recommendations. It was also deemed Highly Effective for 0 and Substantially Effective for 6 with regard to the 11 areas of Effectiveness of its AML/CFT Regime.





US Department of State Money Laundering assessment (INCSR)

Macau was deemed a Jurisdiction of Primary Concern by the US Department of State 2018 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR). key Findings from the report are as follows: -



Macau, a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People’s Republic of China, is not a significant regional financial center.  Its financial system, which services a mostly local population, includes offshore financial businesses such as credit institutions, insurers, underwriters, and trust management companies.  The offshore sector is subject to supervisory requirements similar to those of domestic institutions, and to oversight by Macau’s Monetary Authority. 



EU Tax Blacklist

Macao was removed from EU Tax Blacklist on 23 January 2018 following "commitments made at a high political level to remedy EU concerns".



There are no international sanctions currently in force against this country.




Rating                                                                           (100-Good / 0-Bad)

Transparency International Corruption Index                           N/A

World Governance Indicator – Control of Corruption              75



Since opening up its locally-controlled casino industry to foreign competition in 2001, Macau has attracted tens of billions of dollars in foreign investment, transforming the territory into one of the world's largest gaming centres. Macau's gaming and tourism businesses were fuelled by China's decision to relax travel restrictions on Chinese citizens wishing to visit Macau. In 2015, Macau's gaming-related taxes accounted for more than 76% of total government revenue.

Macau's economy slowed dramatically in 2009 as a result of the global economic slowdown, but strong growth resumed in 2010-13, largely on the back of tourism from mainland China and the gaming sectors. In 2015, this city of 646,800 hosted nearly 30.7 million visitors. Almost 67% came from mainland China. Macau's traditional manufacturing industry has slowed greatly since the termination of the Multi-Fibre Agreement in 2005. Services export — primarily gaming — increasingly has driven Macau’s economic performance. Mainland China’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign has brought Macau’s gambling boom to a halt, with spending in casinos contracting 34.3% in 2015. As a result, Macau's inflation-adjusted GDP contracted 20.3% from 2014, down from double-digit expansion rates in 2010-13. Non-inflation adjusted exports of goods and services dropped 1.8% from 2014, reflecting the slowdown in gaming exports.

Macau continues to face the challenges of managing its growing casino industry, risks from money-laundering activities, and the need to diversify the economy away from heavy dependence on gaming revenues. Macau's currency, the pataca, is closely tied to the Hong Kong dollar, which is also freely accepted in the territory.


Agriculture - products:

only 2% of land area is cultivated, mainly by vegetable growers; fishing, mostly for crustaceans, is important; some of the catch is exported to Hong Kong



tourism, gambling, clothing, textiles, electronics, footwear, toys


Exports - commodities:

clothing, textiles, footwear, toys, electronics, machinery and parts


Exports - partners:

Hong Kong 63.4%, China 18.2% (2015)


Imports - commodities:

raw materials and semi-manufactured goods, consumer goods (foodstuffs, beverages, tobacco, garments and footwear, motor vehicles), capital goods, mineral fuels and oils


Imports - partners:

China 33.8%, Hong Kong 8.8%, Japan 8.5%, Switzerland 8%, France 6.9%, Italy 6.7%, US 6.7% (2015)


Investment Climate  -  US State Department

Macau became a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People's Republic of China (PRC) on December 20, 1999. Macau's status since reverting to Chinese sovereignty is defined in the Sino-Portuguese Joint Declaration (1987) and the Basic Law. Under the concept of “one country, two systems” articulated in these documents, Macau enjoys a high degree of autonomy in economic matters, and its economic system is to remain unchanged for 50 years. The Government of Macau (GOM) maintains a transparent, non-discriminatory, and free-market economy. The GOM is committed to maintaining an investor-friendly environment.


In 2002, the GOM ended a long-standing gaming monopoly, awarding two gaming concessions to consortia with U.S. interests. This opening has encouraged substantial U.S. investment in casinos and hotels, and has spurred exceptionally rapid economic growth over the last few years.


Macau is today the undisputed gaming capital of the world, having surpassed Las Vegas in terms of gambling revenue. U.S. investment over the past decade is estimated to exceed USD 12 billion. In addition to gaming, Macau is positioning itself to be a regional center for incentive travel, conventions, and tourism. The American business community in Macau has continued to grow. In 2007, business leaders founded the American Chamber of Commerce of Macau

Macau seeks to speed up its economic diversification to transform the city into a world center of tourism and leisure as well as a “commercial and trade cooperation service platform” between the Mainland China and Portuguese-speaking countries. The GOM has started various policies to promote economic diversification and sustainable development and create business opportunities for domestic and foreign investors.


Country Links
Financial Intelligence Office (GIF)
Monetary Authority of Macao
Other Useful Links
US State Department
Transparency International
World Bank
CIA World Factbook