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Middle East and North Africa billionaire population grows 24%

Middle East and North Africa billionaire population grows 24%

Billionaire wealth in the region grew to $165bn last year

The Middle East and North Africa region saw its billionaire population grow 24 per cent last year, according to a study by professional services firm PwC and Swiss bank UBS.

The firms said in their Billionaires Insights report that the number of billionaires in the region grew to 52 last year, while their total wealth grew by 15 per cent to $165bn.

Self-made billionaires were found to account for 75 per cent of the regional billionaire population compared to 68 per cent in the United States and 80 per cent in Asia Pacific.

Globally, billionaire wealth grew by 19 per cent to $18.9 trillion shared across 2,158 individuals.

The fastest growing group was Chinese billionaires, which expanded their wealth by 39 per cent to $1.12 trillion.

However, the Americas region was still home to the largest concentration of billionare wealth led by the US, where it grew 12 per cent to $3.1 trillion.

“Over the last decade, Chinese billionaires have created some of the world’s largest and most successful companies, raised living standards,” said UBS Global Wealth Management head of ultra high net worth Josef Stadler.

“We are experiencing a new wave of entrepreneurship worldwide, with billionaires at the vanguard of innovation. They are creating jobs and prosperity, but their impact goes beyond economics. A new generation is emerging, and they see an opportunity to tackle some of the greatest environmental and societal challenges facing humankind.”

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