Oh, the heresy.

The Hurun Rich List predicts that by 2020, the richest person in the world will not live in that bastion of capitalism, the US, but instead be a citizen of the globe’s largest communist nation, the People’s Republic of China.


Rupert Hoogewerf, a British businessman known in China as Hurun founded the Hurun Rich List. In the latest report from the Hurun Research Institute, Hoogewerf predicts that by 2020 the richest person in China will also become the richest in the world.

According to its annual ranking of China’s wealthy, the report says over the past ten years China has seen the fastest growth in rich people and that now China has more billionaires than the US.

Hoogewerf said over the past decade there have been few changes among the richest people in the US. Meanwhile over the past 17 years 12 Chinese people have moved into that category.

Hoogewerf really went out on a limb by predicting that Jack Ma, founder and chief executive of China’s E-commerce giant Alibaba group will overtake property tycoon Wang Jianlin as the wealthiest person on the Chinese mainland.

He said Wang’s other potential rivals on the list include Pony Ma, founder and CEO of Tencent Holdings, one of the largest Internet companies in China, and Lei Jun, founder of Xiaomi, a phone maker known for its affordable models.

The British businessman values the overall wealth of the world’s richest at 500 billion yuan, or $76.65 billion. Wang and Ma are valued at 200 billion yuan each. Judging from the current speed of their growing wealth, Hoogewerf predicts, in five years, the richest person in the world will be Chinese.

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