Beijing, the capital city of China, still boasts the greatest number of wealthy individuals in 2017 in the country, although runner-up Shenzhen is fast closing the gap, according to a report Thursday.
In total, 300 wealthy Chinese with a net worth of at least US$300 million reside in Beijing, accounting for 14% of the 2,130 individuals who made that cut-off for the list, according to “The Richest People in China,” an annual ranking of the wealthiest Chinese by Luxembourg-born British businessman Rupert Hoogewerf, who is known by his Chinese name Hu Run and runs the eponymous research and media firm.
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However, Beijing has 22 fewer wealthiest residents this year. Shenzhen, boosted by the number of millionaires technology giant Tencent has produced, has gained 28, for a total of 223.
While Shanghai registers 11 more individuals with a net worth of US$300 million and more, raising the total to 173, Hangzhou, where the e-commerce giant Alibaba is headquartered, had 30 more residents on the Hurun list. There are now 153 individuals worth at least US$300 million in Hangzhou.
Other findings in this year’s report:
- Real estate developer Xu Jiayin of Evergrande China is the richest person in China with a net worth of US$43 billion, replacing another real estate mogul, Wang Jianlin of Wanda, who falls to fifth place with US$23 billion.
- Overall, 14.6% or 311 richest Chinese have accumulated their wealth in real estate, making it the No. 2 industry following manufacturing.
- The combined wealth of the 2,130 individuals with US$300 million amounts to US$2.6 trillion, equivalent to the U.K.’s gross domestic product, the fifth largest economy in the world.
- The average wealth of China’s richest has grown at 12.5% year-over-year, almost double the pace of the country’s GDP growth.
- The number of billionaires has risen to 647, increasing 53 from last year and up 396 from five year ago.
Global Distribution of Chinese Billionaires
There are 797 billionaires identified as Chinese now. In addition to the 647 billionaires residing in China’s mainland, other known Chinese billionaires mainly live in Hong Kong (66), Taiwan (35), Singapore (13) and Thailand (8).
The United States has eight billionaires of Chinese descent, tying with Thailand and Indonesia as the fifth largest country of residence, according to the report.
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