Macao Special Administrative 
Region of the People's
Republic of China
|Government||Special administrative region|
|Sam Hou Fai|
|Lau Cheok Va|
• Portuguese administration
• Portuguese colony
|1 December 1887|
|20 December 1999|
|29.5 km2 (11.4 sq mi) (235th)|
• Water (%)
• 2012a estimate
• 2011 census
|18,568/km2 (48,090.9/sq mi) (1st)|
|GDP (PPP)||2011 estimate|
|US$47.19 billion (98th)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2012  estimate|
|US$44.300 billion (98th)|
• Per capita
|HDI (2007)|| 0.944|
very high · 25th
|Currency||Macanese pataca (MOP)|
|Time zone||UTC+8 (MST)|
• Summer (DST)
|ISO 3166 code||MO|
|Literal meaning||Bay gate|
|Macao Special Administrative Region|
|Traditional Chinese||澳門特別行政區 (or 澳門特區)|
|Simplified Chinese||澳门特别行政区 (or 澳门特区)|
|Portuguese||Região Administrativa Especial de Macau for "Macau Special Administrative Region"|
The Macao Special Administrative Region (Macau or Macao, simplified Chinese: 澳门; traditional Chinese: 澳門; pinyin: Aomen; Jyutping: Ou Mun) is one of China's two Special Administrative Regions. (The other one is Hong Kong). Macau is a small city in the southern coast in China. Like Hong Kong, Macau has a large amount of autonomy, with its own passport, currency, economic rules, and constitution.
It consists of Macau Peninsula (Aomen Bandao), Taipa Island (Dangzai Dao), Coloane Island (Luhuan Dao) and Cotai (Ludangcheng), the new reclaimed land between Taipa and Coloane. It is very densely populated, with over half a million people living in just over 12 square miles.
Macao used to be a colony of Portugal. Although Portuguese is an official language alongside Chinese (as a result of it being a Portuguese colony in the past), very few Macanese actually speak Portuguese; only about 0.7% speak it at home. As a matter of fact, English is more commonly spoken, despite it not being an official language (about 2.3% speak it at home). Cantonese is the main dialect of Chinese spoken in Macau. However, Mandarin has also become more common since Portugal returned it to China in 1999.
References[change | change source]
- As reflected in the Chinese text of the Macau emblem, the text of the Macao Basic Law, and the Macao Government Website, the full name of the territory is the Macao Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. Although the convention of "Macao Special Administrative Region", "Macao" and "Macau" can also be used.
- The Macau Basic Law states that the official languages are "Chinese and Portuguese." It does not explicitly specify the standard for "Chinese". While Mandarin and Simplified Chinese characters are used as the spoken and written standards in mainland China, Cantonese and Traditional Chinese characters are the long-established de facto standards in Macau.
- "Demographic Statistics for the 2nd Quarter 2012". Statistics and Census Service. Macao SAR Government. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- "Results of 2011 Population Census". Statistics and Census Service. Macao SAR Government. Retrieved 14 August 2012.
- CIA World Factbook
- "Macao in Figures 2010". Statistics and Census Service, Macau SAR. 2010. Retrieved 1 July 2010.
- "What language is spoken in Macau?".
- Riley, Charles. "Macau's gambling industry dwarfs Vegas". CNN.