Forbes Asia Special Issue #3

Forbes Asia chronicles entrepreneurs, executives and companies throughout Asia.

United States
Forbes Media LLC
USD 79.99
13 Números

en este número

2 min.

The Real No. 1 This issue’s roundup of the rich and powerful of China omits one who trumps all the others in the mainland’s pecking order: Xi Jinping. Having just emerged from the National Party Congress with newly exalted status, the Communist chief is in a position to check any national tycoon, as he has amply demonstrated in his “anti corruption” campaign. In this sense, and despite all of its commercial leaps in recent years, China remains a throwback to the days when Asia’s private moguls rose at the sufferance of rulers who chose their crony capitalists. It would be hard to say that about the region’s richest today—you’d have to look toward Central Asia and Russia for superwealthy parallels. Of course, most of China’s richest today got there—at least after the early…

4 min.
iran nuclear deal fix it or nix it

“With all thy getting, get understanding” IN OCTOBER President trump received a chorus of catcalls when he refused to “recertify” Iran’s compliance with barack obama’s flawed nuclear weapons deal with that country. The europeans, russia, china and numerous domestic pundits and politicians (including some within trump’s own government) were critical. The agreement, negotiated in 2015, put Iran on a glide path to legally developing nuclear weapons in less than a decade. The thing to remember is that all obama did was to delay, not stop, Iran from doing just what north Korea is doing: obtaining nukes and building a formidable nuclear force for the future. Moreover, Iran was, in effect, given a free hand to develop the ballistic missiles that could deliver those weapons of annihilation to the U.S., not to mention…

3 min.
$ame old $ame old

The appointment of a new Federal reserve chairman should trigger a thorough and badly needed examination of that institution’s purposes and the principles on which it bases its actions. That won’t happen, however. For unfathomable psychological reasons, monetary policy is one of those subjects that absolutely intimidate most people, which is why the Fed gets away with extraordinary power grabs and long periods of poor performance with only the most cursory, perfunctory glances from congress. Here are some areas he can focus on. •The belief that the Fed can constructively guide the economy’s performance. economists and policymakers regard as holy writ the fantasy that the economy can be steered, as if it were a car, and that the Fed’s task is to make sure the economy gets neither “too hot” nor…

15 min.
wilbur ross’ phantom $2 billion

Fresh off a tour through Thailand, Laos and China, United States Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross Jr. picked up the phone on a Sunday afternoon in October to discuss something deeply personal: how much money he has. A year earlier, Forbes had listed his net worth at $2.9 billion on The Forbes 400, a number Ross claimed was far too low: He maintained he was closer to $3.7 billion. Now, after examining the financial-disclosure forms he filed after his nomination to President Donald Trump’s Cabinet, which showed less than $700 million in assets, Forbes was intent on removing him entirely. Ross protested, citing trusts for his family that he said he did not have to disclose in federal filings. “You’re apparently not counting those, which are more than $2 billion,” he…

11 min.
tax reform, kiwi-style: spell it b-b-l-r

With tax-law revision now before the U.S. Congress, matters of revenue, efficiency and fairness again occupy American minds. But as one of that country’s most celebrated political writers, T.R. Reid, notes in this passage from his 2017 book, A Fine Mess, the best lessons for reformers may come from Asia-Pacific, in the earlier efforts of New Zealand. Ironically, the new Labour-led coalition government of Jacinda Arcern, targeting such ills as real estate “speculation,” has pointed toward revisiting some of the Kiwi handiwork, in the name of... fairness. —Eds. The OECD publishes a broad variety of reports and proposals on financial topics, but one of its perennial bestsellers is a 160-page guidebook called Choosing a Broad Base–Low Rate Approach to Taxation. “In general,” the guide says, “tax reforms that broaden tax bases and…

2 min.
strength to strength

Asia’s wealthiest business dynasties remain successful by producing new generations that push the company in often surprising directions. But some scions have such an entrepreneurial bent that they need to chart their own path away from the family firm, at least when they’re young. One example is 29-year-old Howard Sy, a grandson of Henry Sy, the patriarch of the Philippines’ richest family. A former investment analyst, Sy started a 24-hour self-service storage company called StorageMart a year ago, anticipating that the country’s condominium boom would create a demand for storage space. It now operates two facilities in Metro Manila and boasts 100 customers. “It cost me my entire personal life savings... plus three and a half years of my analyst salary,” he says. The Sy family ranks No. 9 on our third…