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Tokyo, Asia’s millionaire capital
Region’s wealthy enclaves include Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai, while Hong Kong slips
Tom King 14 Sep 2022

Four Asian cities, led by Tokyo, rank in the top 10 in the world by number of resident high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs), with Hong Kong slipping out of the top level, according to a recent report.

Tokyo is Asia’s highest ranked city in second place globally, behind New York, with 304,900 resident HNWIs, those worth over US$1 million. Singapore ranks fifth with 249,800 HNWIs, while Beijing and Shanghai rank ninth and 10th with 131,500 and 130,100 respectively, states the Q3 Global Citizens Report published by investment advisory firm Henley & Partners.

Perhaps unsurprisingly given its recent social unrest and strict Covid-19 quarantine conditions, Hong Kong has tumbled down the rankings and is the biggest faller, crashing down four places to 12th position from eighth place last year with 125,100 HNWIs. The Korean capital Seoul comes 16th on the list with 102,100, leaving Asia with six cities in the top 20.

In the wider Asia-Pacific region, the Australian cities of Sydney and Melbourne are ranked at 11th and 17th respectively with 129,500 and 97,300 US dollar millionaires. 

Despite the economic slump and fraught political environment, the report reveals that five of the top 10 cities with the most millionaires are in the United States, with New York at the top of the ranking with 345,600. Five other American cities also secured prominent places on the ranking with San Francisco third, Los Angeles and Malibu sixth, and Chicago and Houston  seventh and eighth, respectively.

However, in terms of HNWI population growth, the report paints a different picture for New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, which have negative growth of -12%, -6% and -4%, respectively.

Fourteen of the top 20 wealthiest cities in the world, Juerg Steffen, CEO of Henley & Partners, points out, are in countries that host formal investment migration programmes and actively encourage foreign direct investment in return for residence or citizenship rights.

“The right to live, work, study and invest in leading international wealth hubs such as New York, London, Singapore, Sydney and Toronto can be secured via residence by investment,” Steffen adds. “Individuals of talent and means should not limit their lives and business interests to one country. Being able to relocate yourself, your family or your business to a more favorable city, or have the option to choose between multiple different residences across the world, is an increasingly important aspect of international wealth and legacy planning for private clients.”

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