Macanese industrialist Ho Iat-seng announced on Tuesday that he will be running for chief executive in Macau’s election in August.
Ho, 62, son of Ho Tin, who founded the Macau-based Sociedade Industrial Ho Tin SARL, said in a media briefing in Macau that he would like to contribute to the development of the Greater Bay Area and use his experience to help connect the Asian gaming city with mainland China.
He said if he wins the election, he will first focus on solving the problems that Macau’s people are facing and push forward with the economic diversification of the city. He said the gaming industry is a pillar of Macau’s economy but at the same time has stifled the development of small and medium-sized businesses due to the limited land and manpower available in the city.
On Monday, 344 election committee members were selected from 350 candidates. With another 56 people from Legco, the National People’s Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), 400 people will form an election committee to elect the next chief executive on August 20 to lead Macau, which has a population of 620,000.
Ho is seen as the strongest candidate in the coming election, according to local media.
Born in Macau on June 12, 1957, Ho studied at Pooi To Middle School (Macau). He was a CPPCC member in Zhejiang province between 1978 and 1998. In 1992, Ho studied electronic engineering and economics at Zhejiang University and later became a visiting fellow of the university. In 2000, Ho was selected as an NPC member representing Macau and as a standing member the following year. Ho was an Executive Council member in Macau between 2004 and 2009.
Ho was elected as a Legco member in Macau in 2009. In October 2013, Ho became Legco’s president, serving until he announced his resignation on Tuesday.
According to media reports, Ho’s father Ho Tin contributed to China’s economy in the 1960s when the country was struggling with a lack of resources.
Ho is the fourth person to announce that they are running for chief executive. The others are businessman Leong Kuok-chao, activist Hoi Weng-chong and Choi Ting-ting. Secretary for Economy and Finance Lionel Leong Vai-tac hinted in late April that he might not run in August.