Thought Leadership

Irene Ho
A view from the top

by Irene Ho, Head of Diplomatic Council Singapore.

Top global wealth trends and why Singapore is one the best countries to invest.

The global number of high net worth individuals (HNWI) is steadily increasing, but we see a millionaire migration. The wealth exodus from China continues. Australia and the U.S. see big gains, as the HNWI inflow and outflow of top countries shows:

Losses: China - 15000, Russia -7000, India -5000, Turkey -4000, United Kingdom -3000, France -3000, Brazil -2000, Indonesia -1000, Saudi Arabia -1000. Note: Despite high outflows China is still creating more millionaires than it’s loosing.

Gains: Australia +12000, United States of America +10000, Canada +4000, Switzerland +2000, Singapore +1000, Greece +1000, Israel +1000, New Zealand +1000.

The world’s richest people live in (number of people with fortunes of at least $ 30 million) London (4494), Tokyo (3732), Singapore (3598), New York (3378), Beijing (1673), Paris (1667), Seoul (1594), Taipei (1519), Zurich (1507) and Sao Paulo (1352). Source: Knight Franks 2019 Wealth Report.

Best luxury invests are (based on a 10 year value change): rare whisky +582%, cars +258%, coins +193%, stamps +189%, watches +173%, art +158%, wine +147%, jewelry +112%, colored diamonds +102%.

Singapore is a business heaven: stable currency, growing economy, 17% corporate tax, all AAA credit ratings. Singapore is the least risky country in the world for investments. It has no significant restrictions on remittances, foreign exchange transactions and capital movements. Tax on capital gains and dividend income is 0%. All foreign-sourced income is tax exempt as long as the income has been subjected to tax in a country with a headline tax rate of at least 15%.

The professional industry growth rate of 4.6% from 2015 to reach a value-add of S$ 31 billion by 2020 and generate 5,500 new professionals, managers, executive and technical (PMET) jobs every year in the same period of time.