Three decades from now, the world's financial activity may very well be managed and controlled by the richest people from Asia.
In a new wealth report released last week, it showed Asia will become the world's new "economic center of gravity" and thus house the new batch of elite rich by 2050 based on a per capita basis.
The survey made by property giant Knight Frank and Citi Private Bank forecast Singapore will have the richest residents in the world by 2050, on an estimated per capita income of $137,710.
Along with Singapore in the Top Five slot in the 2012 Wealth Report were Hong Kong at $116,639, Taiwan at 114,093 and South Korea at $107,752. Top five went to the U.S., which fell from third place in a similar report released in 2010. Yes, no China in top five.
The only Western nation that made it to the top five, the report said the U.S. will have an estimated per capita income of $100,802 by 2050.
"While rapid GDP growth does not in itself guarantee a sharp rise in high networth individuals, rapidly growing economies do provide key opportunities for large-scale wealth creation," Grainne Gilmore, head of UK Residential Research at Knight Frank, wrote in the study.
The study noted that at present, the world has an estimated 18,000 "centa-millionaires" or those having $100 million or more in assets. Most of these can be found in Southeast Asia, China and Japan, and were actually more than the 17,000 and 14,000 found in North America and in Western Europe, respectively.
Collectively, centa-millionaires now number 63,000, up 29 per cent since 2006.
The survey could actually hold a grain of truth as evidenced by the move of Eduardo Saverin, Facebook co-founder, to Singapore in 2009. Mr Saverin even renounced his U.S. citizenship, according to a CNN report.
Also Jim Rogers, co-founder of the Quantum Fund, did the same in 2007. Now painstakingly teaching his daughters to speak fluent Mandarin, "I'm preparing them for the 21st century by knowing Asia," Mr Rogers told CNN.
As to economic growth, Nigeria led the top ten nations that will zoom over the next forty years, followed by India, Iraq, Bangladesh, Vietnam, the Philippines, Mongolia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Egypt.
At the bottom 10 were Japan, along with Old World economies of Spain, France, Sweden, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands, Italy and Germany.
"It's easier to get rich in Asia than it is in America now. The largest creditor nations in the world are actually China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore. The assets are in Asia," Mr Rogers noted.
"While the U.S. is just the largest debtor nation in the history of the world, along with Greece and Spain. Look where they are now."
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