Culture of business dealings
- Business Meeting
- Public Holidays
In Macau, you will encounter a mix of Chinese and Portuguese culture during negotiations. Compared to Hong Kong, Chinese elements prevail in Macau. Even here, however, it always matters who your counterpart is.
According to Cheer Countries, the first contact is usually formal and it is customary to exchange business cards first. If you are not sure in communication which of your counterpart’s names is a surname, it is good to know that local businessmen usually state their surname in capitals on their business cards (or in their signature). Business meetings tend to be more formal in Hong Kong, so it’s best to stick with Mr. XY/Mrs. XY unless they offer you a more informal first name.
If you first meet someone in person, for example during a trade fair, it is customary to exchange business cards. We recommend having business cards available in a bilingual version, i.e. in English and Chinese. Be sure to give and receive the business card with both hands. Handing out a business card with one hand can be considered disrespectful. Ideally, present the business card in such a way that it is easy for your partner to read. It is not unusual for your counterpart to bow slightly as part of the thank you. It is considered polite to rest your eyes on the business card you have just received for a moment before tucking it away in the business card holder. If you consider the contact to be promising and if you want to build good relations and maintain the interest of the counterpart, we recommend that you write a short courtesy email within about a day of getting to know each other.
Arranging a meeting in Macau takes place in a similar way as in the Czech Republic. Lunchtime can generally be considered less formal and more business-like than dinnertime. Standard time for lunch is between 12:30-14:00, dinner time starts after 18h. Advance table reservation is a must. An alternative location for the meeting can be a meeting room in the hotel, if this is available. Punctuality belongs to good manners. Especially in the summer months (May-September) there are high temperatures and noticeable humidity in Macau. At the same time, all interior spaces are air-conditioned. The best choice is therefore clothing made from natural materials. A well-groomed appearance is highly regarded in Macau, it is not uncommon for men to have a tailored suit. A large number of luxury brands are readily available here, both women and men wear original accessories (handbags, belts, watches) from very renowned brands.
Gender is not an issue in Macau. Society is very egalitarian in this respect. Much more important than gender is hierarchical position and education. Even in the case of recommendations for business meetings, it is not appropriate to generalize. Everything always depends on the specific counterpart, the size of the company and the volume of the potential agreement.
Undoubtedly, a welcoming gesture is to invite a business partner and pay a joint bill.
The official languages in Macau are Portuguese, Cantonese and Mandarin. In general, it can rather be assumed that your business partner will have a good level of English. Many local entrepreneurs are graduates of foreign schools. In the vast majority, there is no need to worry about interpreting into Cantonese or Mandarin. The situation may be slightly different for small local companies, where it is necessary to assume poorer English language skills. In terms of means of communication, we recommend e-mail as well as personal communication.
In communication, a big faux pas would be if you pushed your counterpart into a corner in a negotiation or conversation and he “lost face”. The feeling of losing face is very hard to bear in the local culture. It is therefore important to keep in mind that even if you can defeat your counterpart with excellent arguments, this strategy will often take you further away from closing the deal victoriously.
- January/February – Lunar New Year (*lunar holidays have a floating date)
- April – Ching Ming Festival
- May – Labor Day, Buddha’s birthday
- June – Tuen Ng Festival
- October – national holiday of the PRC, Chung Yeung festival
- December 20 – Establishment of Macao SAR (1999)
- December – Christmas
Basic conditions for the use of Czech goods on the market
- Market entry
- Forms and conditions of operation on the market
- Marketing and Communications
- Issues of intellectual property protection
- Public procurement market
- Payment terms, payment ethics and resolution of commercial disputes
- Visas, fees, specific conditions of travel to the territory
- Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic
- Fairs and events
The classic model is applied: import – distribution – retail. There is a strong tendency for consumer goods to be imported directly from the manufacturer. Macau companies are relatively small. Their advantage is the ability (often based on traditional long-term business relationships) to find customers and re-export goods to China and other countries in the region. In Macau, there is a large concentration of stores of luxury fashion brands such as Max Mara, Luis Vuiton, E. Zegna, Prada, etc., despite the fakes of their products imported from mainland China, they are doing well, thanks to the high purchasing power of visiting visitors.
Forms and conditions of operation on the market
The usual process of company registration, or business activities. The amount of the foreign share is not limited in any way. There are investment incentives. Very favorable special conditions are offered for off-shore activities. Czech companies can use the IPIM program, which offers the provision of an office free of charge for a period of 3 months, foreign companies only pay electricity costs and telecommunication fees. More detailed information at: www.ipim.gov.mo There is currently no information about the presence of Czech investments or about a joint venture in Macau.
Marketing and communication
The financial burden of marketing activities is significant due to the strong competition and at the same time high price level, but it is necessary. Macao is trying to profile itself as an important regional exhibition center. The Macao International Trade and Investment Fair (MIF), which is held annually in the exhibition spaces of the casino complex of The Venetian hotel (one of the largest exhibition centers in the region, 100,000 square meters of area), has an international character. The Macao International Environmental Co-operation Forum and Exhibition (MIECF) is also strongly supported by the Macao government in March.
Issues of intellectual property protection
In recent years, the Macanese government has placed great emphasis on intellectual property protection, but risks still remain.
Public procurement market
Public contracts (administrative contracts) are generally awarded on the basis of a public tender. To a limited extent, in certain cases it can be a so-called limited tender, in which a limited number of interested parties are invited, meeting specific, pre-specified conditions. The last option is the direct award of the contract after consultation with at least three interested parties.
Payment terms, payment ethics and resolution of commercial disputes
Macao has full autonomy in the field of judiciary, the legal system is based on the legal system of Portugal. The judiciary works independently and quickly, and standard procedures and rules apply. List of law and law firms at www.aam.org.mo. The Czech Republic does not have an agreement with Macao on mutual protection and support of investments. Based on the experience of Czech entities, the payment conditions are good. GK Hongkong only recorded a few cases where a Czech customer paid for goods that were not delivered.
Visas, fees, specific conditions for traveling to the territory
Bilateral visa-free regime for a tourist stay of up to 90 days. Macau is a safe territory.
Due to the strict covid policy, Macau remains closed to the outside world.
Employment of citizens from the Czech Republic
A work visa is a condition for employment of a citizen of the Czech Republic. A general condition for obtaining a work visa is a qualification that is not normally found on the available labor market.
Fairs and events
- MIECF Ecological Fair
- Macao International Trade and Investment Fair
Practical telephone numbers (emergency services, police, firemen, information lines, etc.)
Emergency call 999 – police, fire, ambulance and medical assistance
International code +853
Important web links and contacts
- Macau Chamber of Commerce – www.acm.org.mo/en/main1.htm
- Macau Industrial Association – www.madeinmacau.net
- Macau Exporters and Importers Association – www.macauexport.net
- Macau Trade and Investment Promotion Institute – www.ipim.gov.mo
- Macau Productivity and Technology Transfer Center – www.cpttm.org.mo
- Monetary Authority of Macau – www.amcm.gov.mo
- Consulate General of the Czech Republic – www.mzv.cz/hongkong
- Macao SAR Government – www.gov.mo
- Economia – fresh economic data – www.economia.gov.mo
- Macau Census and Statistics Services – www.dsec.gov.mo
- e-Commerce Macau – www.ec-macau.com
- Macau.net – www.macau.net
- Macao city guide – www.cityguide.gov.mo
- Macau tourist guide – www.macautouristguide.com
- Macau hotels – www.orientaltravel.com/hotel/city/Macau.htm
- Air Macao – www.airmacau.com.mo/index.htm