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Hong Kong tops Asia as city with most ultra-wealthy residents: report

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    Hong Kong is the Asian city with the highest number of ultra-wealthy property owners, according to a report released on Tuesday.

    Using a wealth intelligence database called Wealth-X, London-based data firm Altrata found that a total of 15,175 ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) individuals — those with a net worth of at least $30 million — had primary or secondary residences in Hong Kong.

    Hong Kong, which has long been regarded as the Asian financial hub, has a history of political unrest due to its status as a special administrative region of China. 

    It is also still recovering from the impacts brought on by the pandemic.

    According to the report, these factors have been detrimental to the city’s appeal:

    This comprises mostly primary residences of the wealthy, attracted by its unrivalled links to mainland China, low taxation and status as a major global financial services hub. However, recent political developments have diminished Hong Kong’s attractiveness to non-financial international companies.

    Despite its political uncertainties, Hong Kong remains one of the cities with the highest concentration of wealthy residents.

    “Hong Kong stands out among top-tier global cities, with one ultra wealthy resident or second-homer for every 351 city residents, around three times the UHNW density level of New York and Los Angeles,” the report reads.

    In an effort to continue attracting wealthy individuals, Hong Kong offers tax incentives for non-local property owners who live in the city for at least seven years and obtain permanent residence. Those earning more than 2.5 million Hong Kong dollars (approximately $318,000) and graduates from top universities around the world with at least three years of work experience are also eligible for a new two-year visa.

    New York topped the list with 21,714 millionaires and billionaires, followed by London with 15,907.

    The U.S. dominated the list with six out of the top 10 cities with the most ultra-wealthy residents. Besides New York, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Chicago and Washington D.C. were also among the top 10.

    Beijing and Singapore ranked seventh and eighth, respectively. 

    The report added that Tokyo would “almost certainly” be among the top five cities, but that a lack of data on the real estate market in Japan made it impossible to rank.

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