US Remains #1 For Chinese Millionaires Who Want To Emigrate, With Canada Following Steadily Behind

People rushing at departure area in airport.

A just-released survey about China’s uber-rich has found that half of China’s millionaires plan on emigrating to Canada or to the U.S.

The survey was based on the Hurun Report and Visas Consulting Group, which tracks immigration trends among Chinese millionaires who have a net worth between 10 million and 200 million yuan, or $1.5 million and $30 million respectively.


Chinese Businessman at Vancouver Convention Center. Credit: Flickr, Joshua Dool

The report revealed that half of Chinese individuals would like to move to Canada, the second-most popular destination, with Vancouver high on the list, which is currently ranked fifth. The U.S. ranked #1.

Canada beat Britain for the very first time, with the latter moving to third while Australia kept steady as the fourth choice. In the US, Los Angeles ranked ninth, while, Seattle, San Francisco and New York City quickly followed in that order.


The survey found that many Chinese millionaires who want to leave the country plan on doing so because of the following reasons. 76 percent want to take advantage of the exceptional schools in the US and Canada while 64 percent wanted a better living environment. The 64 percent who want to relocate is due mostly because of China’s pollution, which is a major concern.

“Education and pollution are driving China’s rich to emigrate,” said Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher of the Hurun Report. “If China can solve these issues, then the primary incentive to emigrate will have been taken away.”


For those who plan on emigrating, their wealth will continue to help the nation’s economy, with the Chinese pouring money into real estate investments, which greatly benefits the real estate industry.

However, the devaluation of the yuan has tempered eighty-four percent who plan on relocating because of concerns that China’s currency is losing value. The Hurun Report claims that the yuan fell to an eight-year low last fall, before recovering somewhat this year. Meanwhile, half are concerned about the exchange rate of the dollar, as well as foreign exchange controls and property bubbles in China.


Photo by REUTERS/Keith Bedford

In the past, the Chinese had to jump hurdles if they wanted to relocate.
The government required them to disclose the purpose of their foreign investment to them in order to cut back on overseas transfers at $50,000, which would have resulted in the curb of flow of money pouring out of China. In turn, the real estate industry would have taken a major hit.

A more current problem is President Trump’s restriction on immigration. But so far this is not a problem due to the EB-5 program, which allows China’s wealthiest to emigrate and become US or Canada citizens in exchange for them to purchase property with a $500,000 value.

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