Singapore: World’s richest country by 2050?
August 15th, 2012
12:12 PM ET

Singapore: World’s richest country by 2050?

By Patrick Winn, Global Post

Editor’s note: The following text is from Global Post, which provides views – importantmoving or just odd – from around the world. The views expressed are solely those of the author.

If you enjoy peering inside the minds of the world’s super rich, take a look through the 2012 “Wealth Report.”

Compiled by Citibank, and a property consultancy called Knight Frank, it’s a lengthy analysis based partly on interviews with the super rich. (Definition: people with more than $25 million in investable assets.)

Yes, the report contains musings on why yacht sales are down and the pros and cons of buying a sports franchise. But that’s not the most interesting part.

The study predicts that Singapore – that little Southeast Asian city-state with loads of Type A zeal – will be the world’s richest nation by 2050.

And by that, they mean its per capita GDP at purchasing power parity. (For those who skipped economics class, this attempts to more accurately measure the average income by considering inflation, cost of living and exchange rates.)

According to Citibank’s 2050 prediction, the top five countries by this measure will be:

1. Singapore: $137,710

2. Hong Kong: $116,639

3. Taiwan: $114,093 (Congratulations, Taiwan, Citibank analysts think that you’ll make it 2050 without being consumed by China.)

4. South Korea: $107,752

And sliding in at number five, the only non-Asian nation, the United States: $100,802

But there are some glaring questions about these numbers, which are based on Citibank’s own analysis.

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According to the report, Singapore is already the top GDP per capita champ with a figure of more than $56,000. But that doesn’t account for tiny, oil-rich Qatar, which leads most rankings with an average of more than $92,000 according to the World Bank. And there’s no mention of super-affluent Luxembourg either.

Regardless, Singapore is genuinely affluent and the report suggests why.

In interviews with “high net worth individuals” around the globe, the Wealth Report asked the super rich about their “favorite things.”

In response, Indians said cars and gadgets, Latin Americans said traveling and Africans said safaris.

The favored items of extremely wealthy Singaporeans?

“Books and reading materials.”

Post by:
Topics: Economy • Singapore

soundoff (281 Responses)
  1. PG

    I wish journalists and so called experts would really come and live in Singapore , and live like the majority of Singaporeans. Most of what is said is government hype , the economy is delicate , as its export based , has no natural resources , not even water or food . Is also subject to possible sea levels rise and already there have been floods in the city centre .
    This is a city state not a country , and its rich people come from countries all around , with little or no questions asked about where the money comes from.
    Also the statement
    The favored items of extremely wealthy Singaporeans?
    “Books and reading materials.”

    Then tell me why most of the bookshops in Singapore have shutdown , even in the city centre

    November 21, 2012 at 1:01 am |
  2. PG

    CNN just went down in my estime for producing a report like that , just shows what people really know

    November 21, 2012 at 1:02 am |
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  4. PG

    Unsustainable countries will not be around in the near future , already countries like China and India have realised that without their own food and unpolluted water they will go nowhere , especially as climate will change and countries which are food exporters today will no longer be . Singapore survives on trade , and as anti pollution legislation and restrictions kick in to stop global warming , there will be less trade , otherwise the planet is doomed and major climatic and sea level changes will wipe out large areas of the planet .

    December 29, 2014 at 12:25 am |
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