A survey shows that the level of attention of local residents to the forthcoming Legislative Election is merely average, with only half of surveyed respondents expressing they ‘will pay attention’ or ‘pay close attention’ to the elections.
The survey – jointly conducted by the Macao Creative Intelligence Development and Research Association (MCIDRA) and the University of Science and Technology (MUST) – was conducted over 10 days, from July 16 to 26, with a total of 456 respondents considered valid for the research.
Professor Lin Guangzhi, Director of the Institute for Social and Cultural Research at MUST and also one of the survey conductors, reported that 85 per cent of the survey respondents who are registered as legitimate voters would choose to vote on election day.
With the candidate lists already announced for the elections, 57.2 per cent of survey respondents were still unsure of which candidate to vote for. Two-thirds of that group are within the age groups of 25 to 34 and 35 to 44.
The notable percentage of voters who are still uncertain on whom to cast their ballot for could be advantageous for newly nominated candidates, the professor pointed out.
Of the respondents, for 53.1 per cent this will be their first time to vote in the elections, while 61.4 per cent of respondents were university graduates. Regarding employment background, around 46.1 per cent of survey respondents were unemployed or awaiting a job offer.
When asked about the criteria that voters would consider when placing their votes, 79.4 per cent opined that daily actions were more important than the manifestos of candidates, for which 17.5 per cent of respondents were more inclined.
The report also looks at the performance of the current Legislative Assembly (AL), with 59.6 per cent of survey respondents awarding scores below the pass mark (below 60), with ratings averaging 46.2.
The survey also revealed that 71.1 per cent of respondents opined that the current AL lacks individuals representing the grassroots sector.

A platform for young entrepreneurs
Meanwhile, the vice president of MUST, Michael Pang Chuan, also the convenor of the group, introduced the three main areas of MCIDRA’s core mission during yesterday’s press conference.
The three main areas are: startup businesses set up by young entrepreneurs, the innovative economy, and the creative and cultural industries.
A series of activities will be held by the group, said the vice president, such as sharing sessions about startups, forums on the innovative economy and investment, visits to successful enterprises and training courses on improving innovative ability.
Pang revealed that the group has planned to create youth funding as well as a platform for crowdfunding to support young people in starting their own businesses.

Short election campaign
Speaking before yesterday’s conference, Pang said the proposal of extending the currently allowed two-week campaign period should be brought up at the next election.
“There are some candidates stating that the period of two weeks for campaigning at the beginning of September is too short but [the suggestion of extending the campaigning period] should be proposed next election,” said Pang.
He suggested that the period for campaigning could be extended to three weeks or even a month for future elections.
Given that the regulations for this year’s elections have already been set, the MUST vice-president perceived that candidates should abide by the rules for this year.