Immigration and Chinese HNWI 2016


The Hurun Research Institute and Visas Consulting Group today jointly published a 28-page report on Immigration and the Chinese HNWI 2016.












Chinese Immigrants Index:

  • Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher of Hurun Report, said "This bespoke index is designed to guide China's HNWIs on the most suitable emigration destinations, taking into account education, ease of investment, immigration policy, property investment rules, taxation, medical care, visas and ease of adaptation for Chinese emigrants.”

  • The USA led for the second year of the index, followed by the UK, which held onto second place despite Brexit. 

  • Canada was third, followed by Australia and Singapore.

  • The Republic of Ireland broke into the Top 10 for the first time, shooting straight into sixth place. Six of the Top 10 are European countries.


Overseas property:

  • The West Coast of America is the most attractive destination for Chinese HNWI to settle in, particularly Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. Rupert Hoogewerf said, “Seattle has been shooting up the rankings of Preferred Destinations for Chinese HNWI for the second year in a row, even surpassing New York to break into the top three this year.”

  • Over the next three years, 60% of HNWIs intend to invest in overseas property. Rupert Hoogewerf said: “China currently has 1,340,000 high net worth individuals, defined as individuals with US$1.5m, so that means we are looking at a massive 800,000 individuals who want to buy property overseas over the next three years.”

  • Overseas property purchases are most popular form of overseas investment.

  • Value for money is the primary consideration when buying a house overseas, followed by high rates of return and the immigration status it confers. Rupert Hoogewerf said, “Prices in major Chinese cities have risen so fast in the past year that an overseas house seems to offer good bang for your buck.”

  • Where to buy? Being close to a good school led for 52%, followed by downtown (23%) and close to Chinese communities (17%).

  • Main reasons for buying. 43% for living in or renting out, followed by asset allocation and children's education

  • Demand for related services is also on the rise, with investment advice (53%) the most sought-after service, followed by the provision of information about overseas property markets (43%) and overseas property brokerage (32%).


International Asset Allocation:

  • More than half of the HNWI are concerned about the depreciation of the yuan, with other prominent concerns including the US dollar exchange rate and overseas asset management. Rupert Hoogewerf said, “The trend this year goes beyond emigration to global asset allocation. For rich Chinese today, the target is to have one third of their wealth overseas.  Buying houses and foreign exchange deposits lead the way.”

  • Overseas financial investment accounted for 15% of the wealth of the individuals surveyed.  Rupert Hoogewerf said, “The main reasons for investing overseas are to spread their investment risk, children's education and with emigration in the back of their minds.”

  • When investing overseas, asset safety is the top priority. 64% chose 'risk control' as their foremost consideration. Foreign exchange deposits are the investment of choice, at 31%, followed by funds with 15 and insurance accounting for more than 10%. Rupert Hoogewerf said, “For Chinese HNWIs today, their investments overseas are conservative nest eggs, not risk capital.”

  • Eight out of ten HNWIs have 'passion investments', with the two most popular ones, paintings and watches, accounting for 24% and 16%.  Stamps (7%), wine (4%) and classic cars (2%) are other popular options. Compared with last year, the proportion investing in painting showed a considerable increase, up 33%, while wine investments fell by 2%.



(28 October 2016, Beijing) The Hurun Research Institute and Visas Consulting Group today jointly published a 28-page report on Immigration and the Chinese HNWI 2016. This report highlights the trends arising from this often controversial topic, featuring a bespoke index on the Most Suitable Countries for Emigration and a bespoke list of the Preferred Cities to Buy Houses and Emigrate to. The report draws on a survey of around 300 Chinese high net worth individuals (HNWIs), carried out between August and October 2016, with average wealth of 27 million yuan, who have either emigrated or considered emigrating. This is the third year of the report. A Chinese high net worth is defined as a family with net wealth of 10 million CNY, equivalent to US$1.5 million.


Rupert Hoogewerf, Hurun Report Chairman and Chief Researcher said, "Worries about the depreciation of the yuan and housing bubbles in major Chinese cities are pushing Chinese HNWIs to invest their money overseas. I am delighted to be working again with leading immigration agency Visas Consulting Group, who share similar values to us in wanting to research and understand the trends behind this boom in overseas Chinese investments.”


David Chen, Visas Consulting Group partner lawyer, said “Continuing interest among Chinese for investment migration is largely attributed to clearer application processes for countries such as the US and Canada, as well as networks already set up by migrant friends and relatives. I am delighted to be putting out this milestone paper for the third year running with Hurun Report, the world’s leading authority when it comes to researching the Chinese high net worth individual.”



Table: Chinese Immigrants Index

This index considers the most suitable countries for Chinese high net worth individuals to emigrate to, taking into consideration a basket of eight factors, including education, ease of investment, immigration policy, property investment rules, taxation, medical care, visas and ease of adaptation for Chinese emigrants.

CountryScore   (change)
1 -USA9.2   (+0.1)
2 -UK8.6 (-0.1)
3 -Canada8.2 (-0.1)
4 -Australia7.5 (-0.3)
5 -Singapore7.2 (-0.4)
6 *Ireland7.1
7↓Germany6.7 (-0.7)
8 *Spain5.8
9 -Hungary4.0 (-1.7)
10 -Portugal3.9 (-1.8)

Source: Immigration & the Chinese HNWI 2016, by Visas Consulting Group and Hurun Report

- same as last year ↓down *new to top 10



Table: Preferred Destinations for Emigration and Overseas Property Purchases

The West Coast of the USA led the way.


Rupert Hoogewerf said, “Vancouver and Toronto both dropped down the rankings, on the back of changes to the housing investment rules and the fast growth in house prices.”


City%   (Change)
1 -LA17.8% (+0.4%)
2 -San Francisco13.2% (-2.8%)
3 ↑Seattle12.8% (+3.9%)
4 ↓New York11.6% (-1.9%)
5 ↑Boston7.2% (+1.6%)
6 ↓Vancouver7.1% (-1.7%)
7 ↑Melbourne3.9% (+1.1%)
8 ↑New Zealand3.8% (+1.2%)
8 ↓Sydney3.8% (-0.2%)
10 ↓Toronto2.7% (-0.3%)
11 ↓Singapore2.2% (-0.6%)
12 -Chicago1.9% (-0.3%)
13 ↑Malta1.8% (+1.4%)
14 -London1.4% (-0.6%)
15 -Japan1.2% (-0.2%)
16 ↓HK1.1% (-1.1%)
17 ↓France1.0% (-0.4%)
18 -Spain0.9% (-0.1%)
19 ↑Antigua & Bermuda0.8% (+0.4%)
20 ↓Portugal0.6% (-0.6%)
20 -St Kitts & Nevis0.6% (0)
22 ↓Italy0.5% (-0.1%)
23 ↑Hungary0.4% (+0.2%)
23 ↑Cyprus0.4% (+0.2%)
25 ↓Canberra0.2% (-0.6%)

Source: Immigration & the Chinese HNWI 2016, by Visas Consulting Group and Hurun Report

- same as last year ↑up ↓down *new to top 10


This is an executive summary of the Chinese press release. For the full press release, please refer to the Chinese language version.



Hurun Research and Visas Consulting carried out the survey from August to October 2016 in major cities across China, with 77% of respondents from first-tier cities, and 23% from second- and third-tier cities. The survey focused on around 300 HNWIs with net wealth of six million yuan or more (equivalent to US$1m). Of the respondents, 25% had already emigrated; a further 40% were in the process of applying, and 32% were considering it. Respondents had an average net wealth of 27 million yuan (equivalent to US$4m); 54% had between 10-50 million yuan, 6% had 50-100 million yuan, and 2% had more than 100 million yuan. Their sources of wealth were investment returns (34%), dividends (25%), salaries and bonuses (30%), family members (1%), business selloffs (1%) and asset inheritance (9%). The average age of respondents was 40 years of age, with most of them in the 31-45 year bracket (59%), followed by 46 years or over (34%), and 30 years of under (8%). 88% of respondents had children, with 56% having one child, 29% having two, 3% having three or more. 40% had children aged between 10-18 years, 37% had children under 10 and 18% had children over 18. As well as surveys, the study was augmented with a number of face-to-face interviews.




About Visas Consulting Group


Founded in 1974, Visas Consulting Group is a leading international immigration legal services provider.


Over the past four decades, Visas Consulting Group has been committed to maintaining a leading position in the industry, continuing to provide customers with professional, timely and considerate customer service to help clients build a brighter future overseas.


The history of Visas Consulting Group (VCG) can be traced back to 1974, when Lawyer Gaston Perron, opened an immigration practice in Montreal, Canada. Today VCG has wholly owned or joint-venture legal practices in the US (San Francisco and Los Angeles), Canada (Montreal and Vancouver), the UK (London), Australia (Sydney) and New Zealand (Christchurch). VCG was also one of the earliest immigration advisory companies to enter the Chinese market, and now has branches in top-tier cities nationwide. In order to provide the most direct, thorough service to Chinese clients, VCG’s permanent staff in China includes a large team of foreign lawyers, immigration advisers and government registered immigration consultants. VCG also employs a number of former immigration officials with rich experience in assessing Chinese citizen’s immigration applications. To ensure professional standards and quality of service, a foreign lawyer and an expert immigration adviser always take personal charge of each case.


Over the past 41 years, VCG has helped tens of thousands of applicants to immigrate; our success rate has long set us apart from our peers. In particular, when it comes to the US EB-5 investment program, VCG has long maintained a 100% success rate in three key areas: project success rate, I-526 provisional Green Card success rate, and I-829 permanent Green Card success rate. VCG’s professional standards and quality of service have won not only praise from clients, but also formal recognition from the immigration services of the target countries. Louis Leblanc, Vice-President of the National Bank of Canada, and the pioneer of Canadian immigrant investor program says “Visas Consulting Group stands out among immigration agencies for its outstanding lawyers, excellent interview training and thorough relocation services.” With offices worldwide, VCG’s highly praised relocation service includes airport pick-up, housing brokerage, and school registration for children, etc.



Relevant Hurun Research


This year, Hurun Research Institute has released the following research reports for Chinese high-net-worth population, they are:


(15 August 2016, Beijing) Taikang and Hurun Report today jointly released Retirement Planning and Healthcare of Chinese HNWIs 2016.This 48-page report is based on a study of 1125 High Net-Worth Individuals (HNWIs) across China, and 30 one-to-one interviews with HNWIs in the first-tier cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen. Please browse here:


Full report:


(30 May 2016, Shanghai/Hong Kong) – Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAR) and the Hurun Research Institute are delighted to release the Chinese Luxury Traveler 2016 today. This inaugural study marks the first-of-its-kind collaboration between an international hotel company and a leading authority on Chinese luxury travel. Please browse here:


Full report:


(18 April 2016, Shanghai) The Hurun Research Institute today released Hurun Luxury Car Brands in China 2015-2016, a 46-page report comparing the images of nine luxury car brands and their owners in China: Audi, BMW, Porsche, Mercedes Benz, Lexus, Volvo, Land Rover, Cadillac and Infiniti. Please browse here:


Full report:


April 13, 2016, ABACE Shanghai) Hurun Research Institute and Minsheng Financial Leasing today jointly issued ‘China Business Aviation Special Report 2016, a 29-page report highlighting the current market need for business jet purchases and charter in China and with an exclusive survey of current and potential jet owners. Please browse here:

Full report:



About Hurun Report Inc

since 1999


Established as a research unit in 1999, Hurun Report Inc. has grown into a leading media group targeted at China and India high net worth individuals. Its flagship is the Hurun China Rich List and, since 2012, the Hurun Global Rich List. Headquartered in Shanghai, Hurun Report has offices in Beijing, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Sanya, London, Los Angeles, Chicago and Cochin, Kerala, in India.


Hurun Report Inc has five divisions.

Hurun Research (‘Nobody Knows China’s Rich Better’) has grown to become the world’s leading authority when it comes to understanding the Chinese high net worth individual. Recent reports include partnering with some of China’s most important financial institutions, local government, multinationals and luxury brands, including Bank of China, Taikang Insurance, Marriott International, Minsheng Bank, Minsheng Financial Leasing, Industrial Bank of China and the Changbaishan government.


Hurun Media (‘The Voice of Chinese Entrepreneurship’) reaches between up to two million unique viewers a week through its multi-platform distribution. Hurun Media has four key media brands, led by Hurun Report (business and entrepreneurship), Hurun Education, Hurun Art and Hurun Health. Its flagship business media Hurun Report has an active WeChat social media, an online business talk show called MaShangHu, distributed through iQiyi, and PC- and Mobile-friendly website


Hurun Conferences and Training hosts over 100 events across China every year, led by its flagships in Beijing and Shanghai every year.  Hurun Conferences and Training brings Chinese entrepreneurs aboard, to the US, London, Singapore, Australia and India. Hurun Business School started in 2016.


Hurun International. Hurun Report Inc established its India business in 2012, which today is best-known for the Hurun India Rich List, Hurun India Philanthropy List and for hosting events with some of India’s most respected entrepreneurs.


Hurun Investments includes a CNY 100m early-stage venture capital fund, and strategic investments in media, education, media, classic cars, financial services and luxury.


For further information, see


Official Wechat platform: HurunReport