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Rich get richer and grow in numbers
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2007-11-02 11:46
The booming economy and the stock market have caused an explosion in the wealth of the mainland's richest people whose net worth this year has more than doubled, according to this year's Forbes Magazine's China mainland rich list.

The total amount of the mainland's top 400 rich people's fortune reached US$280 billion, an increase of US$164 billion from last year. The threshold to enter the list this year also almost doubled to 1.5 billion (US$201 million) yuan from last year's 800 million yuan.

Sixty-six of the listed rich people are US dollar billionaires, compared to 15 last year, giving China one of the largest group of billionaires in the world, Forbes said yesterday.

A characteristic of this year's 400-person list is that nearly 40 percent of the names are first timers. Of the first 40 richest, nine are new faces, including the leader, a 26-year-old woman named Yang Huiyan.

Yang, daughter of southern Guangdong Province-based Country Garden Holdings Co's founder who transferred his shares to her, scored with a net worth of 121 billion yuan (US$16 billion), thanks to the booming real estate sector on the mainland. Including Yang, five of the top 10 richest people are involved in real estate.

"Almost all the rich people's wealth comes through the domestic or overseas capital market, which make our statistics more transparent this year," said Russell Flannery, Forbes' Shanghai Bureau chief and the compiler of the list.

Families

Thirty-one people or families on the list made their fortune through listing their companies from late last year, including the No. 1 on the list Yang, whose business made its debut on the Hong Kong stock market on April 20 and produced altogether five names for the rich list.

Suning Appliance Co, China's second biggest electronics retailer, contributed the largest number of rich people on the list. The six of them have a combined net worth of 52.3 billion yuan (US$7 billion).

But the combined fortune of these six remains a little under that of Xu Rongmao, who controls Shimao Property, the Hong Kong-listed arm of real estate developer Shimao Group. Xu retained his second place on the rich list this year for his fortune of 54.4 billion yuan (US$7.3 billion).


Source:Shanghai Daily 
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