CHINA. Beijing: The latest Forbes’ annual rich list says that the Chinese capital Beijing is now home to more billionaires than any other city in the world.
According to the business magazine, Beijing added 33 billionaires last year and now hosts 100. This figure narrowly overpowers New York City, which hosts 99 and for the last seven years has held the top rank. What helped China gain the top spot was its quick containment of Covid-19, the rise of its technology firms and stock markets. Although Beijing now has more billionaires than the Big Apple, the combined net worth of New York City’s billionaires was at US$80bn (£58bn) greater than that of their counterparts in Beijing.
The founder of the video-sharing app Tiktok and chief executive of its parent firm ByteDance, Zhang Yiming was Beijing’s richest resident. He saw his net worth double to $35.6bn. In contrast, former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who was New York City’s richest resident had a fortune worth $59bn.
Apart from the US, China has seen its technology giants become even bigger during the pandemic as more people took over the online world for work, shopping, entertainment, and daily needs. This paved the way for the massive creation of personal wealth for the founders and shareholders of these tech titans. With 210 newcomers, China has added more billionaires to the list than any other country globally. The major formula for around half of China’s new billionaires was making fortunes from manufacturing or technology ventures, including Kate Wang who made billions from e-cigarettes.
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The US still leads with 724 billionaires, but with 698 billionaires, China is closing in on the States.
Last year, a record 493 newcomers joined the list globally, which sums it up to roughly one new billionaire every 17 hours, according to Forbes. India had the third-highest number of billionaires, with 140. Compared to the US billionaires’ $4.4tn, in total, the 1,149 billionaires from the Asia Pacific were worth $4.7tn.
For the fourth consecutive year, Jeff Bezos, founder, and chief executive of Amazon, remains the world’s richest person. His net worth grew by $64bn to $177bn last year.