BYD boss tops Forbes China rich list

Updated: 2009-11-05 16:39

After topping this year's Hurun rich list, Wang Chuanfu, head of Nanjing-based car manufacture BYD Co Ltd, is again recognized as China's richest by Forbes Magazine.

China's 400 Richest List released by Forbes Thursday puts the car tycoon's fortunes at a staggering $5.8 billion, followed by Liu Yongxing of East Hope Group ($5.5 billion) and Zong Qinghou of Wahaha Group ($4.8 billion).

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A record-breaking total of 79 billionaires, compared with just 24 last year, entered this year's list, after a strong economic performance and rebounding stock markets in Hong Kong and Shanghai, according to the magazine.

The number is more than Germany, Russia or India had in March when Forbes published its worldwide billionaire rankings.

"Chinese entrepreneurs went through lots of difficulties last year. Now wealth is coming back," Forbes senior editor Russell Flannery was quoted by AFP as saying in a news conference.

"The gains in their personal fortunes were a sharp reversal to the losses sustained by billionaires in other parts of the world, (and) reflected the rise of China," he added.

The magazine said the total net worth of China's 400 richest soared 81 percent, or $141 billion, while America's wealthiest saw $300 billion, or 20 percent of their cumulative total evaporate, dropping to $1.27 trillion at the same time.

The entry level for this year's list increased from $200 million to $300 million, Flannery said.