According to the latest Africa Wealth report, released by Johannesburg intelligence company New World Wealth, South Africa has the majority of African dollar millionaires.
With $610-billion (about R8.5-trillion), South Africa tops the total wealth rankings list, which incorporates property, cash, equities and business interests.
The country is followed by Egypt with $313-billion and Nigeria with $270-billion .
Zimbabwe is at the bottom of the wealth ladder with only $3-billion.
“Despite recent turmoil, Egypt ranks second on the list with 950 multimillionaires and Nigeria third with 620,” said New World Wealth’s Andrew Amoils.
Focusing on the performance of high net worth individuals between 2006 and 2016, the report found that Mauritius showed the strongest growth in millionaires, at 230%.
Amoils said this was propelled by “strong economic growth and the migration of a large number of wealthy individuals, especially from France and Southern Africa”.
“We estimate that 280 millionaires have moved there from South Africa alone since 2006.”
He said other factors, such as the lure of automatic residency for people buying homes worth $500,000, also encouraged the wealthy to move to the Indian Ocean island.
South Africa also dominates the Africa city wealth list, with Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Pretoria in the top 10.
Johannesburg, according to the report, holds a total wealth of $245-billion and has 18,200 millionaires and two billionaires, while Cape Town’s total wealth amounts to $135-billion, with 8,200 millionaires and two billionaires.
Economist Dawie Roodt said: “The fact that we have rich people is good for the country rather than bad. Instead of knocking the rich and telling them that the gap between haves and have-nots is too big, there should be policies put in place to make it easier for people to become rich.
“The only way to reduce poverty is by creating more wealth,” the economist said.