Step aside, New York: Beijing is now the billionaire capital of the world

Global Business

Visitors look around a shopping mall in Beijing on February 25, 2016. (AFP / FRED DUFOUR)

It’s official: Beijing is now home to more billionaires than New York.

The Chinese capital replaced the Big Apple as the billionaire capital of the world, according to the Hurun Global Rich Report 2016 released on Wednesday. This luxury publishing company has complied the wealth ranking for the fifth time this year and the calculations are made in U.S. dollars.

According to the report, there were 2,188 billionaires in 2015 — 99 new members in the world’s wealthiest club compared to 2014.

Top 10 cities where billionaires live

  • 1. Beijing: 100 billionaires
  • 2. New York: 95
  • 3. Moscow: 66
  • 4. Hong Kong: 64
  • 5. Shanghai (tie): 50
  • 5. London (tie): 50
  • 7. Shenzhen: 46
  • 8. Mumbai: 45
  • 9. Hangzhou: 32
  • 10. Paris: 30

Of the 2,188, 100 billionaires called Beijing their home, while 95 of them live in New York. Meanwhile, the Chinese cities of Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Hangzhou are among the top 10 cities where the world’s wealthiest live.

The report also shows that the Greater China Region, including Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan, has 568 billionaires, surpassing the United States, now home to 535 billionaires, for the first time.

Most billionaires from the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong are from the real estate, manufacturing, or technology industry, and 503 billionaires, 94 percent, started their business from scratch.

Rupert Hoogewerf (Hu Run in Chinese), the chairman and chief researcher of the report, said that growth in the number of billionaires worldwide was held back by a slowdown in global economy, strengthening of the U.S. dollar, and drop in oil prices. However, there was still a 50 percent increase in the number of billionaires since 2013.

According to the report, the top three Chinese billionaires are Wang Jianlin from Wanda, Jacky Ma from Alibaba and Zong Qinghou from Wahaha. Their wealth was worth $170 billion, $140 billion, and $125 billion respectively as of Jan. 15, when the wealth calculations were concluded.