Macau unionists broke with tradition this year by not marching on May Day out of patriotic respect for the Olympic torch relay. However, they did take to the streets yesterday, making Macau and Hong Kong the only Chinese cities in which National Day was marked by a protest. Though the demonstration in Macau was attended by only a few hundred people, it served as a reminder of the complex problems facing the city. The issues that brought the protesters out - official corruption, jobs for imported labour rather than locals and dissatisfaction with governance - have been simmering since the casino-driven economic boom changed life in the city. As we report today, the mainland has further tightened restrictions on visas for Guangdong residents to visit Asia's gambling hub. This can be expected to add to pressure on casino revenues and profits that, in turn, is linked to a significant drop in gaming industry job vacancies. With an economic slowdown looming that will not be good for the casino business, the Macau government should be worried. It is only four months since it announced cash handouts to ease criticism of the growing wealth gap, including 5,000 patacas for every permanent resident. Unfortunately, neither the handouts nor the mainland's visa restrictions are the best ways of tackling the problems they target. Beijing wants to rein in the growth of the gaming industry because of the volume of mainland money finding its way into casinos and, eventually, into the pockets of foreign investors. Businessmen and officials are prominent among the gamblers. By restricting freedom of movement, however, the authorities are only treating the symptoms of social problems, such as corruption and lack of transparency in the public and private sectors. Likewise, doling out cash does not improve the prospects of those left behind by the casino-led boom. The Macau government says it will continue to diversify the economy. A greater sense of urgency is needed. The gaming industry will always be Macau's economic lifeblood, but it must diversify its goods and services sectors. That should include an investment of some of the revenue windfall from gambling tax in education. Young people represent the future of Macau. They need better education for job opportunities with real prospects outside casinos.