Beijing was home to more billionaires than any other city in the world, according to the latest annual list of Forbes published this wednesday, beating New York in the process for the first time in seven years.
The Chinese capital added 33 billionaires and is now home to 100, narrowly beating New York, which added seven billionaires last year and is currently home to 99., according to 2021 Forbes World Billionaires List.
The “Big Apple” would have lost its number one spot for the first time in seven years. And this is the first ranking led by Beijing. “Beijing added 33 new billionaires as China quickly recovered from its pandemic woes [Covid-19], going from position 4 to 1 in our annual list ”, reported today the American business magazine.
A buoyant stock market that has especially benefited the tech industries, as well as China‘s toughest economy and its rapid containment of the pandemic, boosted the fortunes of these billionaires. Nevertheless, the combined net worth of New York billionaires remained $ 80 billion, higher than their counterparts in Beijing.
The richest resident of Beijing was Zhang Yiming, founder of social media sensation TikTok and chief executive officer (CEO) of parent company ByteDance, who saw his net worth double to $ 35.6 billion. By contrast, Michael Bloomberg, the richest resident of New York, had a fortune valued at 59,000 million dollars.
The growing stock market also helped China as a whole, adding more billionaires to the list of Forbes than any other country in the world. The Asian nation – including Hong Kong and Macau – witnessed the recent arrival of 210 billionaires to the list. With 698 billionaires, he is fast closing in on the United States, which still leads the ranking with 724..
Hong Kong, which ranked third in 2020, was home to 80 billionaires and added nine more to the list of Forbes last year, despite the pandemic hitting its service-oriented economy hard. Li Ka-shing, who retired in 2018 from CK Hutchison, the conglomerate he founded, saw his fortune grow from $ 12 billion to $ 33.7 billion last year. He remained the wealthiest resident of the city.
“A red-hot stock market is behind most of the new multibillion dollar fortunes, as the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchange indices were 28% and 43% respectively in the past year, which raised the net worth of 136 Chinese citizens “, indicated Forbes. “Another 59 joined the list as part of a historic initial public offering market.”
A record 493 people joined the list globally, about a new billionaire every 17 hours. India ranks third in the ranking, with 140.
A quarter of the 2,755 members of the rich list live in just 10 cities.
In all, the 1,149 billionaires in Asia and the Pacific have a net worth of $ 4.7 trillion, compared to $ 4.4 trillion for billionaires in the United States.
Half of China‘s new billionaires made their fortune from manufacturing or technology companies. Among them are Chen Zhiping, and his wife, Kate Wang, who made money by making e-cigarettes. In the technology sector, the spectacular valuation gains of renewable or green energy companies last year boosted the fortunes of Cao Renxian, founder of Sungrow Power Supply, and Li Xiang, founder of electric vehicle company Li Auto. .
The average net worth of 210 new Chinese members has risen to $ 1.9 billion from $ 1.5 billion last year. Of these, 26 were women. Their average age was 53., a decade younger than the world average.
Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, remains the world‘s richest person for the fourth year in a row. His net worth grew from $ 64 billion to $ 177 billion last year. Tesla’s Elon Musk, who came in second; has seen his fortune grow from $ 126.4 billion to $ 151 billion.