The first residents of Macao Peninsula were fishermen from Fujian and farmers from Guangdong.
The Portuguese arrived in Macao between 1554 and 1557, and set up multiple trading spots with the consent of local officials. Over time, this made Macao a profitable trading post, connecting Europe, China, Japan, India and the United States.
The golden era of trade for the Portuguese faded when the Dutch and the British expanded their trade routes and took predominance. Even so, China continued to trade with Europe via Macao.
Macao lost its strategic position in commerce since the founding of Hong Kong. However, Macao still appealed to travelers, writers and artists as a result of its multi-cultural charm. In modern times, Macao has expanded its industry to include textiles, toy making, and electronic products, with tourism as its priority.
On 20th December, 1999, Macao’s sovereignty was transferred to China and the Macao Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China was established. Macao continues to maintain its cultural, social and economic characteristics in accordance with the principle of “One Country, Two Systems”. Since the opening up of the gambling industry in 2002, Macao has become a world-famous tourist destination.