Singapore sees influx of Chinese billionaires

Singapore sees influx of Chinese billionaires

Singapore is seeing a influx of ultra-wealthy families from China who are trying to protect their wealth from the Chinese Communist Party, who are increasingly viewing them with suspicion.

Three years of zero-COVID policy, as well as the recent crackdowns on tech billionaires and tax-shy celebrities, have led many rich Chinese to look for a safe haven, according to Beijing's recent crackdowns on tech billionaires and tax-shy celebrities.

Some of the country's mega-rich have booked tickets to Singapore, and they're worried about the fate of their fortunes, insiders told AFP.

The key Asian financial hub ticks all the boxes for relocating tycoons.

Singapore has been ruled by one party -- the People's Action Party -- for the past six decades, and labour strikes and street protests have been banned. The population is predominantly ethnic Chinese and the taxes are low.

The presence of recent Chinese arrivals is strongly felt in Singapore, with some moving to luxury homes with waterfront views on the Sentosa Island, which also houses a theme park, a casino and a prestigious golf club.

It's crazy, said Pearce Cheng, CEO of AIMS, a firm that provides immigration and relocation services.

He recalls attending a Chinese client's party where a rare Japanese Yamazaki 55 whiskey, worth around US $800,000 a bottle, was served.

Cheng's firm helps rich Chinese find luxury condos, hire chauffeurs and enroll kids in private schools. It once bought $61,000 worth of cigars.

Foreign members pay US $670,000 a year for Rolls Royces and Bentleys and are often seen at top-tier golf clubs such as the exclusive Sentosa Golf Club.

Many of them are younger Chinese, in fashionable designer clothes, and they usually keep to themselves and dine among themselves, which is not surprising, said Benny Teo, managing director of Blazon, a consultancy specialising in golf.