NEW YORK – Mozambique is expected to add dollar millionaires at the fastest rate in Africa over the next decade, followed by Cote d’Ivoire and Zambia as a mix of construction, financial services and property developments boost the ranks of the rich on the world’s poorest continent.
The number of people with net assets, excluding their primary residence, of more than $1 million (M12.75 million) will surge 120 percent in Mozambique by 2024 to 2,200, Johannesburg-based research company New World Wealth predicted. The number of millionaires in Cote d’Ivoire will jump 109 percent to 4 800 while those in Zambia will double, the company forecast.
“High-net-worth individual numbers are expected to rise by 45 percent over the next 10 years, reaching about 234,000,” New World said in the report, given to Bloomberg.
Mozambique’s economy is being boosted by the biggest natural gas find in the world in the last decade, Cote d’Ivoire is recovering from a civil war and Zambia’s rich are expected to benefit from real estate development. The countries will take over from oil producers Angola and Ghana, where the number of millionaires rose more than fivefold between 2000 and last year, according to New World.
Over that period, the number of millionaires in Africa rose 145 percent compared with a global average of 73 percent.
Mozambique’s gross domestic product per person was $619 last year, according to the World Bank, ranking it just after Togo and among the 15 poorest sub-Saharan nations.
While SA, with 46 800 millionaires, and Egypt, with 20 200, remain Africa’s biggest wealth centres, growth in the numbers of the rich have been held back by emigration from a stuttering economy in SA and instability in Egypt.
Still, SA is expected to remain home to most of the continent’s wealthy, with their numbers rising 40 percent in the next decade to 65,700.
About $120bn in African wealth is overseen by asset management companies, with Investec holding the biggest market share followed by Rand Merchant Bank and UBS, New World said. – Bloomberg