Aid and Indian Billionaires
I would have thought that the case against the UK taxpayer funding development aid to India was open and shut (although the Guardian inevitably tries to keep it ajar), but have been intrigued by repeated references to India having “three times as many billionaires” as Britain.
I traced it to this report in the Daily Mail a fortnight ago, which said that India had 69 dollar billionaires to Britain’s 29. Now, arithmetic and sourcing are two of the Mail’s weaknesses. That is (Programs/Accessories/Calculator) 2.4 times as many.
But from where do these figures come? Perhaps the Mail had access to the Forbes 2011 list of billionaires, to be published presently, although it has not reported this scoop. So it would seem that the 2010 list is the only available source of remotely credible collated data.
And what does it say (scroll down to “Sort List By”)? If we sort the list by citizenship, India had 49 dollar billionaires, and the UK 29. India therefore has 1.7 times as many.
If we sort by residence, India had 47 and the UK 42.* So India has 1.1 times as many.
Glad to have sorted that out.
*Forbes has a curious policy towards JK Rowling (above). She is listed as worth $1bn, which is surely doubtful in itself, but her country of residence is listed as Scotland rather than the United Kingdom. I have added her to the UK total pending further instructions from Alex Salmond.Tagged in: global inequality, international development
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