The Macau SAR bond market takes off
João Nuno Riquito and Bernice Kwok of Riquito Advogados discuss the launch of Macau’s central securities depository system
Encouraging the development of Macau SAR’s financial industry has been a major administrative policy since 2019. As part of this, the bond market is a key area in which the Macau SAR government is determined to build up the financial infrastructure.
With the collaboration and support of the China Central Depository & Clearing Co, the central securities depository system (CSD) was launched in December 2021. The system is run by the Macau Central Securities Depository and Clearing Limited (MCSD), owned by the Monetary Authority of Macau (AMCM).
The CSD provides services such as securities registration, clearing, settlement and deposit. On the first day of operation, two bonds were successfully registered for custody and they were both oversubscribed.
The AMCM joined the Association of National Numbering Agencies last year. This will enable the issue of securities to be accelerated due to the improved process of assignment of the international securities identification number.
In terms of local policies, AMCM has established multiple guidelines regarding the issue of securities, such as transfer, management and custody of bonds, all of which came into effect in 2021.
In addition, profit tax derived from income and bond interest, as well as stamp duties due to issue and transfer of bonds, are exempted.
In order to stimulate the development of the market, the Finance Bureau of the Guangdong–Macau SAR In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin is planning to launch a dedicated assistance plan.
This plan includes measures such as subsidising corporations that issue bonds in Macau SAR, with support of 0.5 to 0.8% of the capital raised (with upper limits of MOP3 million to MOP5 million), as well as lowering the threshold of the issue amount.
João Nuno Riquito
Managing partner, Riquito Advogados
Trainee lawyer, Riquito Advogados