Beijing, Shanghai to be 3rd, 4th choices for billionaires

Updated: 2011-04-07 13:54


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SINGAPORE - Shanghai and Beijing could become the third and fourth choices for the world's billionaires in ten years, though New York and London will remain the world's top two cities, a latest survey has found.

Singapore is now the most popular city in Asia Pacific region for the globally wealthy individuals, local Chinese daily Lianhe Zaobao reported Thursday. About 22 percent of the billionaires from East Asia said they would consider Singapore as their first choice when emigrating, compared with 17 percent for both Canada and Australia.

A research analyst at Knight Frank said Singapore is attractive thanks to its favourable tax policies and comparatively lower housing prices for luxury real estate.

Monaco remained the world's most expensive city in terms of luxury properties at $65,600 a square meter, followed by London, Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong, the report said. The luxury property price in Singapore is $27,100 a square meter, lower than Hong Kong's $27,100.

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The luxury property prices in the world's top cities also rose as collective worth of the global high net worth individuals (HNWI) community increased by 22 percent last year.

"It is not surprising that many of the world's luxury property markets benefitted. The biggest increase in wealth was in Asia Pacific, at 35 percent, and that is where we also recorded the biggest increases in property prices," said Andrew Shirley, editor of the report.

About 14 percent of the respondents in East Asia said they would consider moving to China.

Paris, Tokyo, Brussels and Los Angeles took the third to sixth positions in the current rankings of world's top cities. Beijing was the eighth and Shanghai the 18th. Hong Kong ranked the 17th globally.

The wealthy also said they expected some of the cities in Brazil, Russia and India to rise in their global rankings over the coming years.

"The three biggest winners point to a rebalancing within the Brazil, Russia, India and China (Bric) grouping, with the main cities to watch being Mumbai, Moscow and Sao Paulo. They look set for a dramatic upswing in their status, with each expected to climb by between six and eight places over the next decade," the report said.

The survey, covering 5,000 individuals who has wealth of over $1 billion, was aimed to assess key markets across the world in terms of their provision of investment opportunities and their influence on global business leaders and the political elite, said Knight Frank and Cibi Private Bank.


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