Wealthy Vietnam: How the Country is Surpassing China as the World’s Fastest-Growing Rich Nation

Wealth accumulation is seeing an unprecedented surge in Vietnam, with the country witnessing the fastest growth in the number of individuals with a net worth of over USD 1 million. This remarkable trend underscores the thriving economy and the burgeoning ranks of high-net-worth individuals in the country.

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This information comes from a recent report by New World Wealth, a South African-based global asset reporting firm, and investment migration consultancy Henley & Partners based in the UK. The report provides insights into the number of high-net-worth individuals with a net worth of $1 million or more during the period from 2013 to 2023.

According to the report, the US remains the world leader in terms of the number of millionaires, with over 5.4 million individuals. However, when it comes to the fastest-growing economies, emerging countries like Vietnam, China, and India take the lead. Specifically, as of the end of 2023, Vietnam’s millionaire population stood at 19,400, representing a remarkable 98% increase over the past decade. Among them, 58 individuals have a net worth of over $100 million, and there are six US-dollar billionaires in Vietnam.

According to New World Wealth and Henley & Partners, Vietnam has 19,400 millionaires as of 2023. Illustrative image

Referring to Forbes’ list of global billionaires released in early April, Vietnam is home to six US-dollar billionaires, including: Vingroup Chairman Pham Nhat Vuong, VietJet Air Chairman Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, Hoa Phat Chairman Tran Dinh Long, Techcombank Chairman Ho Hung Anh, Thaco Chairman Tran Ba Duong, and Masan Group Chairman Nguyen Dang Quang.

The report attributes the high growth rate in Vietnam’s millionaire population to the low base effect, as the number of millionaires was just under 9,800 in 2013. However, New World Wealth and Henley & Partners suggest that the rapid increase in millionaires reflects the country’s recent economic success and underscores the trend of growing wealth accumulation.

New World Wealth analyst Andrew Amoils predicts a 125% growth in Vietnam’s wealth over the next decade. Image: CNBC

Back in February 2024, New World Wealth forecasted that Vietnam would experience the world’s most significant wealth growth, with a projected 125% increase over the next ten years. Their analyst, Andrew Amoils, attributed this to the country’s impressive economic performance, outpacing other nations in terms of both GDP per capita and millionaire growth.

In reality, except for the years 2020 and 2021, which were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Vietnam’s economy grew impressively from 2013 to 2023. According to the report, Vietnam’s per capita income rose from $1,960 in 2013 to $4,284 in 2023, almost a 2.2-fold increase.

More recently, according to the General Statistics Office, Vietnam’s GDP growth for the first half of 2024 was 6.42%, just shy of the 6.58% growth rate achieved in the same period in 2022 during the 2020-2024 period.

Looking ahead, the Global Private Banking Services unit of HSBC predicts that Vietnam is poised for strong growth in the second half of 2024 due to the recovery in the global electronics cycle and continued positive FDI inflows.

Top 5 Countries with the Most Millionaires

List of countries with the highest number of millionaires over the past decade (data as of December 2023). Image: VisualCapitalist

The report reveals that the US continues to dominate in terms of millionaire population, followed by China with nearly 1 million US-dollar millionaires. Germany, Japan, and the UK round out the top five. Notably, the UK experienced a slight decline in its millionaire population over the past decade due to Brexit and other economic uncertainties.

On the other hand, Switzerland (ranked 7th) and Singapore (ranked 12th) stand out as economic powerhouses over the past decade. Their favorable tax regimes, asset protection, and privacy laws have made them attractive destinations for high-net-worth individuals.

New World Wealth specializes in tracking the wealth and spending habits of the world’s richest people over the past decade. Their research covers 90 countries and 150 cities worldwide, with a particular focus on Asia and Africa.

New World Wealth utilizes data from its internal research division, focusing on company founders and individuals holding chairman, CEO, director, and manager positions. The company started publishing periodic reports annually (since 2022) on various topics, including millionaires, real estate, and digital assets.

Reference: Utility, CNBC, VisualCapitalist

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