In terms of being home to many of the world’s richest people, it’s already been a tough year for mainland China on the TAUT 2022 billionaires list unveiled in early April. Their ranks shrank to 539 members from a record 626 a year earlier amid slowing economic growth and falling stock prices in the world’s most populous country.
However, the loss of wealth among mainland China’s wealthiest has worsened further since the list was published. At least 97 more registrants among that group of 539 mainland members are now below the $1 billion threshold, based on preliminary estimates using Tuesday’s global stock prices.
The culprits: Covid and rising interest rates. China’s choice of ‘zero-Covid’ policies to fight the pandemic has led to lockdowns and logistical problems affecting millions of people across the country, most surprisingly in Shanghai, a global trading hub of 26 million people. inhabitants. China’s approach to Covid “will come at a very high cost to the economy”, according to Kenneth Jarrett, a longtime Chinese resident, senior adviser to the Albright Stonebridge Group and former president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai. Rising interest rates in the United States also rattled global equity markets this month, dragging down stocks and fortunes.
The 2022 TAUT Billionaires List was calculated based on stock prices and exchange rates as of March 11. The main index of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange – a stock exchange popular among mainland Chinese businesses, continued to fall 4.4% between March 11 and May 10 to 19,633.19; China’s benchmark CSI 300 lost 9.9% to 3,919.87 during the period.
Ex-billionaires come from a wide range of industries. Among them, the wealth of Hu Kun, chairman of medical equipment maker Contech Medical Systems, fell to $779 million from $1.2 billion. Xia Xinde, chairman of battery maker Guangzhou Great Power Energy, fell to $645 million from $1.1 billion; Xiong Shaoming, co-founder of vaping equipment supplier Smoore, has risen from $1 billion to $833 million; Zhong Baoshen, chairman of Chinese solar power equipment leader LONGi, was $906 million from $1.1 billion, and the fortune of Huang Xu, director of fabless semiconductor supplier Fuzhou Rockchip, increased from $1.1 billion to $720 million.
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