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The richest woman in Asia loses half of her fortune

The richest woman in Asia loses half of her fortune

The richest woman in Asia suffered the loss of more than half of her fortune in 2021 as the real estate crisis in China worsened. Yang Huiyan’s fortune plummeted after his real estate company sold shares to raise cash.

Yang Huiyan, the majority shareholder of Country Garden, China’s largest real estate developer, saw his net worth drop by more than 52%. Yang’s fortune rose from $23.7 billion (€23.34 billion) to 11.3 billion (11.13) within a year, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a ranking of the world’s 500 richest people.

The crisis extends to real estate companies that were previously considered strong. When Country Garden’s shares fell 15%, Yang’s fortune took a massive hit. The company, which is based in Guangdun, in the semi-autonomous region of Hong Kong in China, announced that it will sell shares to raise funds.

Yang inherited the fortune from her father, Country Garden founder Yang Guoqiang, in 2005, and two years later became the richest woman on the Asian continent after the first promoter gave her his shares. But now, Yang has failed to hold that title, as chemical fiber mogul Fan Hongwei has climbed to the top of the ladder with a net worth of $11.2 billion (€11 billion).

Chinese authorities clamped down on excessive real estate debt in 2020, leaving big players like Evergrande and Sunak to struggle to make payments and forced to renegotiate with creditors as they found themselves on the brink of bankruptcy.

Buyers across the country are outraged by delays in the construction and delivery of their properties, after they began withholding mortgage payments on homes sold before completion.

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China’s banking watchdog has urged lenders to support the real estate sector and meet companies’ “reasonable financing needs” as analysts and policymakers fear the crisis will spread to more sectors.

The real estate sector is estimated to be responsible for 18-30% of the country’s GDP and is a major growth factor in the world’s second largest economy.

Analysts have warned that the industry is sinking into a “vicious cycle” that will further undermine consumer confidence.