China is producing new billionaires at a faster rate than the US

China is creating new billionaires much FASTER than the U.S. – but America’s super-rich still control more wealth than their Far Eastern counterparts

  • China is the country with the most billionaires – 1,133 in 2022 – while the US has 716 of them
  • But the U.S. still holds the top prize for producing billionaires – and companies with far more international influence 
  • China and the US have contributed to 55 percent of ‘known’ billionaires worldwide over the last year
  • All of the top three richest cities are in China: Beijing is first place with 144 billionaires, followed by Shanghai with 121 and Shenzhen 113, respectively  
  • The richest man in the Far East is Zhong Shanshan, CEO of bottled water company Nongfu Spring. He has a net worth of $60.5 billion
  • In the U.S., CEO of Tesla and Space X Elon Musk overtook Jeff Bezos this year with a net worth more than $200 billion 
  • China also holds a reputation for having the most female billionaires worldwide. As of 2022, 60 to 70 percent of female tycoons live there

China is producing new billionaires, especially female billionaires, at a much faster rate than any other country in the world – though America’s upper class still controls more wealth than its Chinese counterparts.

As of 2022, China has more billionaires, with 1,133, while the US has just 716. 

It’s a wider margin compared to last year, though the U.S. still holds the top prize for producing billionaires and companies with far more international influence, according to Axios. 

Together, China and the US have contributed to 55 percent of ‘known’ billionaires  worldwide over the last year, according to the Hurun’s 2022 Global Rich List. 

Furthermore, New York City no longer features among the top three cities with the highest number of billionaire residents after Shenzhen leap frogged the Big Apple into third place. 

All top three cities are now in China: Beijing in first place with 144 billionaires, followed by Shanghai with 121 and Shenzhen 113, respectively. 

Zhong Shanshan, founder and chairman of bottled water company Nongfu Spring is China’s wealthiest man with $60.5Billion in the bank

American super-rich, however, still hold more real value around the globe than their Chinese counterparts – controlling 33 percent of the overall wealth of the world’s billionaires while China possesses just 27 percent. 

China’s prosperity is linked to the rise of several industries, noticeably real estate, manufactured goods and healthcare. 

The richest man in the Far East is Zhong Shanshan, CEO of bottled water company Nongfu Spring. He has a net worth of $60.5 billion. 

Shenzhen, China has now overpassed New York City for the world’s third city with the most billionaires on the planet (113). Over the last year, China has produced more billionaires (1,133) more than anywhere else, including the U.S. (716) 

A view of bottled Nongfu Spring in a Chinese Supermarket. China’s remarkable rise to claim first place as the country with the most billionaires is largely due to growing industries, such as real estate, technology and food services

WORLD’S RICHEST CITIES 

1. Beijing: 100 billionaires

2. Shanghai: 121 billionaires

3. Shenzhen: 113 billionaires

4. New York City: 110 billionaires

5. London: 101 billionaires

6. Hong Kong: 85 billionaires

7. Mumbai: 72 billionaires

8. Hangzhou: 68 billionaires

8. San Francisco: 62 billionaires

10. Moscow: 58 billionaires 

Source: Hurun Report 

In second place is Zhang Yiming, the founder of ByteDance, which owns TikTok – the world’s largest video-based social media platform. His net worth is $59.4 billion, according to Forbes’ China’s 100 Richest.  

In third place is Robin Zeng, the founder and chairman of battery manufacturer Contemporary Amperex Technology. The 54-year-old has a net worth of $50.8 billion.

However, the estimates aren’t a view into either country’s true economic power, experts say.

That value, dubbed ‘true economic firepower’ in academic circles, takes the value of companies into account – more so than total assets held by particular individuals, according to Rupert Hoogewerf, chief researcher and chairman of the Hurun Report.

The overall market value of the four largest U.S.-based companies, which are Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Alphabet (Google’s parent company) – match the value of China’s top 500 most valuable non-state controlled companies.    

‘[The vast majority] of the wealth on the global rich list to do with China is coming from Chinese consumer [dollars],’ Hoogewerf told Axios. 

Billionaires in the U.S. have mostly made their money from global technology companies, as well as financial services and entertainment companies. America’s wealthiest individuals in 2022 are: Elon Musk – the CEO of Tesla and Space X – with a $248.8 billion net worth; Jeff Bezos – founder of Amazon – with a $241 billion net worth; and Bill Gates, who owns Microsoft, and has a 133.8 billion net worth. 

Space X and Tesla CEO Elon Musk is the world’s wealthiest man, according to Forbes, surpassing Jeff Bezos with a fortune of $248.8Billion

China also holds a reputation for having the most female billionaires worldwide for the last 16 years. As of 2022, 60 to 70 percent of female tycoons live there. 

The reason behind that may be due to the previous one-child policy in the country  from 1980 to 2016, providing women with more opportunities to advance within their careers. 

Cultural norms, including several generations of the same family living under the same roof or relatively close to another, might have also helped as it gives women over there more people to take care of their children while they’re at work. 

Longfor Properties CEO Wu Yajun is estimated to be one of the top business women in China with a fortune of $18 billion fortune, while Hengli Petrochemical Company’s CEO Fan Hongwei is $23 billion. Yang Huiyan, 39, who is the vice-chairwoman of Chinese real estate company Country Garden is China’s richest woman with $34 billion credited to her name, according to SCMP.

Top 10 wealthiest people on the Forbes billionaire list 

1. Elon Musk (U.S.) – $248.8Billion; Tesla and Space X founder 

2. Jeff Bezos (U.S.) – $187.7Billion; Amazon’s chief executive officer

3. Bernard Arnault (France) – $169.3Billion; chief executive of luxury goods firm LVMH

4. Bill Gates (U.S.) – $133.8Billion; Microsoft founder

5. Warren Buffet (U.S.) – $126.3Billion; Berkshire Hathaway owner 

6. Larry Page (U.S.) – $115.Billion; Google co-founder 

7. Larry Ellison (U.S.) – $111.4Billion; Chairman, chief technology officer and cofounder of software giant Oracle 

8.  Sergey Brin (U.S.)  – $110.9Billion; Co-founder of Google, controlling shareholder

9. Steve Ballmer (U.S.) – $96.5Billion; former CEO of Microsoft from 2000 until 2014

 Mukesh Ambani (India)- $84.5Billion; Chairman, managing director of Reliance Industries, India’s most valuable company by market value 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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