The Legal System of Macau

data macau

Macau’s government has a policy of “one country, two systems.” While Macau is considered to be a part of China, it maintains its own legal system. This includes Continental European law as well as laws enacted by the legislative and executive branches of the government, including the police force. It also has its own currency.

The GOM devotes considerable attention to intellectual property rights enforcement. It acceded to the Bern Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works in 2021. In addition to enforcing copyrights and patents, the GOM also requires all public offices to use licensed software. It also requires that all optical discs have a source identification code, and it uses an expedited prosecution arrangement to speed up punishment of those who distribute pirated products.

In terms of education, the great majority of children attend private schools, which are heavily subsidized by the GOM. Five years of primary education are compulsory, and education is generally in Chinese (Cantonese) or Portuguese.

The legal system reflects the principle of “one country, two systems.” It is based on continental European law and incorporates the Basic Law. The judiciary is independent and effective. It has a Court of Final Appeal, Intermediate Courts, and Primary Courts, as well as an Administrative Court. The courts have a proven track record of enforcing commercial, contract, and property rights.

Macau has a well-regulated financial services industry. The banks have a good reputation and are open to foreign investors. The GOM also promotes transparency and competition through a number of measures. The Regulatory Authority for the Financial Sector has a mandate to review all local regulations and introduce new ones as needed.

The GOM is working to strengthen anti-corruption measures. It is a member of the International Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities, and it has published a booklet for private companies on corruption prevention tips. The CCAC has also launched a campaign to identify corrupt business operators and prosecute them.

The legal foundation for the personal data protection regime in Macau is the Personal Data Protection Act, Decree 8/2005. Its core principles include transparency, purpose limitation, and consent. The law requires that all processing of personal information be conducted in a transparent manner and with the knowledge of the data subject. It permits the transfer of personal data outside of Macau if the OPDP determines that the destination ensures an adequate level of protection. The law requires that all data controllers register with the OPDP. This may impose an administrative burden, especially for small-scale operations. It is hoped that the OPDP will streamline its registration process in the future. Exceptions to the registration requirement include the processing of personal data for the purposes of public health surveillance, criminal investigations, and national security. Moreover, the OPDP can also make special provisions for specific processing activities. However, if the OPDP finds that the processing is not in accordance with the law, it will seek the approval of the data subject before it can proceed.