In a recent interview, Rupert Hoogewerf, the founder of China’s Hurun Report, a famous list of wealthy Chinese, estimated the number of Chinese billionaires to be over 5,000.
The calculation is based on official statistics that count 1,393 individuals as having personal assets of 1 billion yuan ($0.15 billion US). Hoogewerf believes that the those who are excluded from the official count generally number about twice those who are included, or around 3,000 people. Adding the two numbers together, the richest group may well be above 5,000.
Hoogewerf said that their wealth mainly comes from real estate, manufacturing, IT, medicine, and retail business. The average age of wealthy Chinese is only 51 years old.
Source: China News Service, September 30, 2010