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The Richest Citizens and Most Billionaires in the World, 2023


Table of Contents
  • #1. United States
  • #2. China
  • #3. India
  • #4. Germany
  • #5. Russia
  • #6. Hong Kong*
  • #7. Italy
  • #8. Canada
  • #9. Taiwan (tie)
  • #9. United Kingdom (tie)
  • #10. Brazil
  • Russian oligarchs rebound while American moguls lose $200 billion. Here’s this year’s country-by-country breakdown of the world’s wealthiest people.

    VIDEO: The Countries With The Most Billionaires And Their Richest Citizens | Forbes
    Forbes

    The ultra-rich are everywhere. The 2,640 billionaires on Forbes’ 2023 ranking of the world’s wealthiest people hail from 77 countries or territories around the globe, up from 75 last year.

    The two new additions are Panama and Armenia, each of which added one billionaire: Stanley Motta, a Panamanian investor whose portfolio of Latin American companies includes Panamanian bank Banco General, joins the list, as does Ruben Vardanyan, an Armenian investment banker and politician who made his fortune in Russia during the 1990s (and who last year renounced his Russian citizenship). He returns after dropping off the 2022 list.

    The U.S. again reigns as home to the most billionaire citizens, with 735–the same number as last year. Despite nearly 50 Americans, including Kanye West and Sam Bankman-Fried, dropping from the ranks and another dozen dying, more than 60 U.S. citizens joined the billionaire ranks for the first time this year, including LeBron James and Tiger Woods. The U.S. is no longer home to the richest person in the world–luxury goods tycoon Bernard Arnault, a citizen of France, overtook Elon Musk for the title–but America still claims 17 of the world’s 25 richest people. In all, U.S. billionaires are worth a collective $4.5 trillion, down from $4.7 trillion last year as markets retreated, billion-dollar “unicorn” startups stumbled and rising interest rates haunted investors.

    China boasts the second-most billionaires, with 495 (not including citizens of Hong Kong and Macau) who have a combined $1.67 trillion. They, too have, had a down year overall–in 2022, there were 539 Chinese billionaires worth $1.96 trillion. The country’s zero-Covid policies and rocky transition to a post-pandemic economy lowered economic growth and hit stock prices. A crisis in China’s property sector, driven by a glut of real estate after decades of nonstop development, also weighed on China’s economic outlook. So has the Communist Party’s recent crackdown on big tech platforms. Notable Chinese drop-offs include e-cigarette tycoon Xiong Shaoming and Zhao Weiguo, chairman of Tsinghua Unigroup, a Chinese government-backed semiconductor business. Zhao was reported to have "disappeared" from public view in mid-2022, and was charged with corruption in March 2023.

    India, which has the third-most billionaires, with 169, had a more mixed year. The country gained three list members, but Indian billionaires as a group–worth $675 billion–are $75 billion poorer than in 2022. The biggest reason for that drop can be traced to one of the greatest wealth crashes in history: Gautam Adani, chairman of the embattled Adani Group conglomerate, plunged from $90 billion in net worth last year to $47.2 billion on Forbes’ 2023 ranking after accusations of massive fraud and stock market manipulation tanked shares of his ten publicly-listed Adani Group companies. (Adani has denied the allegations.) Adani’s nearly $43 billion plummet accounts for more than half of the entire Indian wealth decline since last year.

    Germany, meanwhile, once again has the fourth-highest number of billionaires, with 126, down from 134 last year. Notable drop-offs include Joachim Ante, cofounder of gaming company Unity Software, and the three Knauf heirs to building materials giant Knauf Gips KG. Germany’s richest person is Dieter Schwarz (estimated net worth: $42.9 billion), owner of the discounted supermarket giant Schwarz Group, which generates annual sales of over $140 billion.

    Despite war and Western sanctions, Russian billionaires outperformed the rest of the world’s richest this year, as the wealthiest in the country mostly recouped the losses they suffered following the invasion of Ukraine. Russia counts 105 billionaires this year with a combined net worth of $474 billion, up from 83 worth a combined $320 billion last year.

    Why the big jump? For one, Russian oligarchs have mostly made back their lost wealth. Of the 105 Russian billionaires counted by Forbes, 25 of them are returnees–meaning they missed last year’s list after featuring in a previous year. (In 2021, there were 117 Russian billionaires, worth a collective $584 billion.) That’s because last year, when Forbes finalized its 2022 list, the Russian market was frozen and analysts’ predictions for Russian firms were dire. A year later, Western sanctions have hit Russia’s economy hard, but a global upswing in commodities prices–driven in large part by the invasion and subsequent Western sanctions–have bolstered revenues for some Russian firms. The biggest beneficiary has been Russia’s richest person, fertilizer tycoon Andrey Melnichenko, worth an estimated $25.2 billion fortune–up from $11.1 billion last year–thanks to his fertilizer giant EuroChem and soaring fertilizer prices as a result of the war. Others to recoup their fortunes have included oil tycoon Vagit Alekperov (up $10 billion), steel magnate Alexey Mordashov (up $7.7 billion), and nickel mogul Vladimir Potanin (up $6.4 billion).


    Forbes



    Here are the 10 countries and territories with the most billionaire citizens:

    VIDEO: Richest Countries 2023
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    (NET WORTHS ARE AS OF MARCH 10, 2023)

    VIDEO: Countries by Number of Billionaires 2023
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    POOL/AFP via Getty Images

    #1. United States

    VIDEO: TOP 10 RICHEST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD 2023
    Trend Max

    735 Billionaires (vs. 735 last year)

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    DATA SETS

    Total Net Worth: $4.5 trillion (down $200 billion)

    VIDEO: Richest people in the world 💲
    Real Data

    Richest Person: Elon Musk, net worth: $180 billion

    VIDEO: Richest Companies in the World 2023
    World Data 3D

    VCG via Getty Images

    #2. China

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    King Luxury

    495 Billionaires (vs. 539 last year)

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    Trend Max

    Total Net Worth: $1.67 trillion (down $300 billion)

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    LE CONGO EST A NOUS

    Richest Person: Zhong Shanshan, $68 billion

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    DATA SETS

    © 2022 Bloomberg Finance LP

    #3. India

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    169 Billionaires (vs. 166 last year)

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    King Luxury

    Total Net Worth: $675 billion (down $75 billion)

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    The Billionaire Avenue

    Richest person: Mukesh Ambani, $83.4 billion

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    Gravity

    © 2023 Bloomberg Finance LP

    #4. Germany

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    World INFO 3D

    126 Billionaires (vs. 134 last year)

    VIDEO: Country Size Comparison
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    Total Net Worth: $585 billion (down $23 billion)

    VIDEO: 20 Richest People In The World (2023)
    King Luxury

    Richest person: Dieter Schwarz, $42.9 billion

    VIDEO: Top 10 Richest Countries Across the Globe🌐
    Rank 4 Ten

    © 2016 Bloomberg Finance LP

    #5. Russia

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    Data, Stats and Comparisons

    105 Billionaires (vs. 83 last year)

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    Captain Gizmo

    Total Net Worth: $474 billion (up $154 billion)

    VIDEO: Top 10 Richest Countries In The World 2023
    Phil Trivia

    Richest person: Andrey Melnichenko, $25.2 billion

    VIDEO: Top 10 Richest Countries in the World 2023
    Sir Betterment


    Visual China Group via Getty Images

    #6. Hong Kong*

    VIDEO: Richest Countries in the World 1500-2022 | GDP PPP per Capita
    Gozhda

    66 Billionaires (vs. 67 last year)

    VIDEO: The Richest Presidents In The World (2023)
    King Luxury

    Total Net Worth: $350 billion (down $33 billion)

    VIDEO: 💰 Richest People in the World in 2024
    DATA SETS

    Richest person: Li Ka-shing, $38 billion

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    AFP via Getty Images

    #7. Italy

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    Beautiful Comparison

    64 Billionaires (vs. 52 last year)

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    Phil Trivia

    Total Net Worth: $216 billion (up $21 billion)

    VIDEO: Number of Billionaires By Country 2023 | World Richest Man 2023
    Data, Stats and Comparisons

    Richest person: Giovanni Ferrero, $38.9 billion

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    Getty Images

    #8. Canada

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    63 Billionaires (vs. 64 last year)

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    Total Net Worth: $245 billion (down $63 billion)

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    Richest person: David Thomson & family, $54.4 billion

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    #9. Taiwan (tie)

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    52 Billionaires (vs. 51 last year)

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    Total Net Worth: $136 billion (down $15 billion)

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    Richest people: Lin Shu-hong, Zhang Congyuan ($7.8 billion each)

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    © 2021 Bloomberg Finance LP

    #9. United Kingdom (tie)

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    52 Billionaires (vs. 50 last year)

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    Total Net Worth: $202 billion (up $2 billion)

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    Richest person: James Ratcliffe, $22.9 billion

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    © 2023 Bloomberg Finance LP

    #10. Brazil

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    51 Billionaires (vs. 62 last year)

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    Total Net Worth: $160 billion (down $27 billion)

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    Richest person: Vicky Safra and family, $16.7 billion

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    *Hong Kong is an autonomous territory of China.

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