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Real estate a 'major business' of billionaires
Date:2010/5/27      View:1241
One-third of Chinese billionaires have businesses in real estate, a latest research report has found.

The report, released by, an independent Chinese website focusing on alumni affairs, showed that half of the number of Chinese billionaires have businesses in three major industries: real estate, energy and information technology.

China has 1,958 billionaires. Of these, 567 people have businesses in real estate and their companies are mainly located in big cities such as Beijing, Hangzhou, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, where property prices are significantly higher, the report said.

The report was based on statistics from the Hurun China Rich List and The World's Billionaires list from Forbes from 1999 to 2009.

Wang Lingfeng, chief analyst from, said the rapid increase of housing prices, especially in a number of big cities in recent years, is a main reason that more real estate agents have become rich.

China has been speeding up its urbanization in the past 10 years and a sufficiently large number of people have been heading to big cities, in turn creating great demand for housing, analysts said.

The number of residents in Beijing alone has jumped from 12.57 million in 1999 to 17.55 million in 2009, statistics from the Beijing Statistical Yearbook showed.

"The Chinese mainland has been concerned more about its commercial housing development in the past years, while the building of affordable housing has lagged behind. Meanwhile, investors also pushed up housing prices, bringing more profit to real estate agents," Wang said.

Similar cases also occurred in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, where many rich people also started their businesses from real estate, he said.

The report also showed that 40 percent of billionaires have no academic qualifications or only studied in vocational schools. About 30 percent of them have master's degrees or doctorates.

The report listed the top three universities that produced the most billionaires in China as Peking University, Tsinghua University and Zhejiang University.

Harvard University topped the list of overseas schools.
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