Facebook’ co-founder Eduardo Saverin is one of Singapore’s most prosperous expatriate.
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Singapore takes top position in Asia as a safe haven for the wealthy: four out of ten of the richest in Singapore are expatriates. The country ranks third, behind London and New York, as a haven for the well-heeled. A main reason is that Singapore, while famous for its dedication to law and order, has a less draconian tax code than many other countries. It has no capital gains tax and individual taxes are lower.
Saverin was born in São Paulo, Brazil, to a wealthy Jewish family, which later moved to Rio de Janeiro. Eduardo’s father was an industrialist working in export, clothing, shipping, and real estate. When, in 1993, it was discovered that Eduardo’s name had been placed on a list of potential kidnapping for ransom, the family emigrated to the US and settled in Miami, Florida.
Singapore is also a popular place to relocate for the rich from Canada, New Zealand and Indonesia. The country isn’t just a place to settle, but to accumulate wealth in a peaceful, clean and relatively stable society. 54% of Singapore’s ex-pats earn more than $200, 000 a year, much greater than the global average of 7%, according to an Expat Explorer survey in 2012. Other Asian countries that made it to the top ten include Hong Kong, Vietnam, China and Thailand.
The rewards are substantial for the move to Singapore. Of those surveyed, 80% said that their disposable incomes increased after relocating to Singapore, and 44% stated that this increase was at least 50%. Among the advantages cited were less commuting time, less crime and a better quality of life. Others said that job opportunities were greater, and a solid work ethic contributes to a motivated labor force. Many of these ex-pats diversify their investments while in Singapore with cash, real estate and equities.