Only 24 percent of Macau’s manufacturers in the third quarter of 2011 were optimistic about the territory’s exports in the coming six months, an official survey released by the Economic Services Bureau shows. The figure is 13.1 percentage points below the previous quarter. Less than one percent of the exporters expected exports to post a strong increase in the coming six months. Some 31 percent of the interviewed manufacturers deemed that exports would slow down in the coming six months. The survey also indicated that 66 percent and 56 percent of the interviewed manufacturers respectively, said they faced the challenge of surging prices of materials and increasing international competition in the third quarter. Some 41 percent of the manufacturers said they were affected by labour shortage problems.