Cape Town joburg emigration

According to the research, South Africans are making more enquiries than most when it comes to emigration – Photo: Unsplash

Emigration shock: Cape Town, Joburg LOSING ‘richest citizens’

The economic clout of Cape Town and Joburg has diminished in 2022 – and this emigration data shows that our millionaires are on the move.

Cape Town joburg emigration

According to the research, South Africans are making more enquiries than most when it comes to emigration – Photo: Unsplash

New emigration data released by Henley & Partners this week has revealed that something of a ‘wealth exodus’ is taking place in two of South Africa’s biggest cities. Millionaires, of all distinctions, have turned their backs on Cape Town and Joburg in 2022.

Wealth exodus? Emigration stats are punishing for SA…

The factors measured by H&P make for compelling reading. Johannesburg itself boasts the highest amount of dollar-millionaires – or, to put it in our local currency, people who are worth roughly R17 million or more – in the whole of Africa.

Cape Town comes third on that list, with both of SA’s business hubs separated by Cairo, the Egyptian capital. Despite being known for its affluence, the glitz and the glamour of the Mother City is outdone by the sheer size and industrial might of its noisy neighbour in Gauteng.

Johannesburg boasts more than double the amount of High Net Worth Individuals, in comparison to Cape Town. That’s also the case for ‘multi-millionaires’, who are classed as having $10 million or more in the bank. Must be nice!

Cape Town joburg emigration
Joburg has more millionaires, multi-millionaires, AND billionaires than Cape Town does – Photo: Unsplash

Cape Town, Joburg lost HUNDREDS of millionaires this year

Even if we keep adding the zeroes on, Jozi stays winning. It also hosts four more centi-millionaires (worth $100 million) and one more billionaire (worth $1 billion) than its friendly competitor in the Western Cape. However, Joburg’s emigration losses are a bigger source of concern.

In the 2022 calendar year, it’s understood that 760 residents worth $1 million or more LEFT the city altogether. That’s 5% of the local millionaire population. Cape Town also saw its wealthy taxpayer base dwindle – but only by a rate of 2%…

Cape Town lost fewer of its mega-rich citizens than Joburg did this year – Photo: Unsplash

Emigration and wealth: How SA’s two biggest cities compare…

You can peruse over the figures yourself here:

FactorCape TownJohannesburg
No. of High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs)6 80015 200
Change in No. of HNWIs in 2022 (year-to-date)-2%, down by 136 people-5%, down by 760 people
Multi-millionaires (worth $10m or more)410800
Centi-millionaires (worth $100m or more)2428
Billionaires (worth $1bn or more)OneTwo

Cape Town vs Joburg: More riches in Jozi, but fewer loses in Mother City

According to a statement from Henley & Partners, South Africans have one of the biggest appetites for emigration in the world. The legal specialists explain that those with the means to do so now have ‘new choices’ when it comes to setting up their families and businesses.

“In the six months to the end of June 2022, we had already received 63% of the enquiries received in the entire 2021 year from affluent citizens. South Africa and Nigeria are in the top 10 countries globally, in terms of both enquiries and applications for emigration.”

“As the post-pandemic era commences, African entrepreneurs and investors face new choices about where best to locate their families as well as their headquarters, production, and workforces.” | Henley & Partners