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Which Asian Country Is Minting Millionaires the Fastest?

Ansuya Harjani |Assistant Producer, CNBC Asia Pacific
Wednesday, 26 Sep 2012 | 2:11 AM ET

While China may currently have the highest number of high net worth individuals in Asia, another much smaller regional economy - Indonesia - is expected to see the fastest growth in its millionaire population, according to a report by Swiss private bank Julius Baer.

Pedestrians cross a street in Jakarta's modern business district.
Romeo Gacad | AFP | Getty Images
Pedestrians cross a street in Jakarta's modern business district.

The number of high net worth individuals, or those with at least $1 million in investable assets, in the Southeast Asian nation is set to triple between 2010 and 2015 to almost 100,000, according to the 2012 Julius Baer Wealth Report.

China’s millionaire population is forecast to grow at a slower pace at about 2.5 times over the same period.

“Indonesia’s an economy that is being stimulated by the infrastructure side and the resources side. These strengths are feeding through into the pockets of some individuals,” Thomas R. Meier, CEO Asia of Julius Baer told CNBC Asia’s “The Call” on Wednesday.

Indonesia is one of the fastest growing economies in the region, expanding 6.4 percent in the second quarter. The country’s abundant natural resources and booming private consumption have made it an attractive destination for investment.

Julius Baer says much of the wealth creation will be driven by robust returns on key assets including property and the stock market.

The bank estimates Indonesian property values could rise 11 percent per annum, while the stock market to provide returns close to 15 percent per year until 2015. The benchmark Jakarta Composite has risen 10 percent since the start of the year.

While Indonesia’s rich are growing at the fastest pace in Asia, China will still lead the pack accounting for almost half of the region’s total millionaires in 2015.

In three years, the bank estimates the mainland will be home to 1.37 million of the world’s three million high net worth individuals.

China’s millionaires, however, have been struggling to hold onto to their wealth in the past year, according to the2012 Hurun Report, an annual ranking of China’s wealthiest individuals published earlier this week. The report showed that almost half of the mainland’s ultra-rich population saw their wealth shrink.

Of the richest 1,000 individuals, 469 suffered financial losses amid a pullback in the country’s property and stock markets.

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