HONG KONG: China is expected to overtake Japan as the second wealthiest country in the world by 2015 on the back of rapid economic growth and strong domestic consumption, a report said Friday.
In its inaugural Global Wealth Report, Credit Suisse Research Institute predicts total wealth in China will more than double in five years, jumping 111 percent to 35 trillion US dollars.
“Ten years ago, China was the seventh largest country in global wealth. Since then, the country has accelerated past major European countries and is expected to overtake Japan in 2015,” Giles Keating, Credit Suisse’s head of research in private banking and asset management, told a news conference.
The United States currently has the largest share of wealth in the world, amounting to 27 percent of 195 trillion dollars. Japan comes in at second place with 11 percent and is trailed by China with eight percent, the report showed.
France, Italy, Germany and Britain come in at fourth place with six percent.
The report is based on data collected mid-2010 across more than 200 countries.
“The report confirms that Asia Pacific countries are driving the growth of the world’s wealth. Asia holds great potential for future growth,” said Osama Abbasi, Credit Suisse’s CEO Asia Pacific.
China currently holds 16.5 trillion dollars, 35 percent more than France, the wealthiest European country, and almost five times that of India, according to the findings.
The report predicts consumption patterns in China will shift from necessities such as food and clothing to luxury items including recreation, education, health care and housing.
Wealth is also expected to surge in other emerging markets in the Asia Pacific region, especially India and Indonesia. By 2015, India’s wealth is expected to double to 6.4 trillion dollars while Indonesia’s will grow from 1.8 trillion dollars to more than 3.0 trillion dollars.
The report also found there are more billionaires in the Asia Pacific region than in Europe.
Of more than 1,000 billionaires globally, 500 are in North America, 245 in the Asia Pacific and 230 in Europe.