High Net Worth Individuals (HNW) immigration soars 16% in 2017


LOW TAX NEWS – According to research from South African consultancy New World Wealth, the number of “high net worth individuals” (HNWIs) changing their country of residence soared by 16 per cent last year, to some 95,000.

An HNWI is defined as someone who has at least US$1 million in assets, not including their primary home.

Canada is a top destination in this great migration, taking in almost as many millionaires last year as the U.S. did. The number-one destination was Australia with the U.S. in second place and Canada third.

With so many wealthy individuals on the move, it’s not surprising that their reasons are varied. Education (for family members) and personal safety are the two most frequently stated reasons for emigrating, according to New World Wealth. Others include climate, healthcare and business opportunities. Most wealthy people are concerned about living in stable countries with financial systems that can protect their wealth.

The increasing number of high net worth individuals who migrate highlights an aspect of wealth noted by Reaz H. Jafri of Withers Worldwide, a law firm that assists wealthy clients who want to relocate. “The wealthy today don’t have a country,” Jafri told The New York Times. “They don’t view their success as being related to or dependent on a single country, but on their own business strategies. It’s amazing to me how many of the very wealthy are going totally mobile.”

France having seen the largest exodus in 2016 (12,000 millionaires with a great number moving for tax reasons), fared better in 2017 with 4,000 HNWIs leaving the country.

India witnessed the second largest number of millionaire outflow globally after China, with 7,000 HNWIs changing their domicile during 2017.

Globally, as many as 10,000 super-rich Chinese changed their domicile in 2017. Other countries that witnessed large high net worth individual (HNWis) outflows include Turkey (6,000), United Kingdom (4,000), France (4,000) and the Russian Federation (3,000).

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