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List of Mainland's Top Philanthropists Released

Huang Rulun, chairman of a Yunnan Province real estate company, tops the Hoogewerf list of China's leading philanthropists, released on April 11.


With a total donation of 286 million yuan (US$34.5 million), the 54-year-old Huang, chairman of the Century Golden Resources Group, reportedly donated 20 percent of his wealth.


Yu Pengnian, an entrepreneur based in Shenzhen, and Li Jinyuan, head of a direct sales company in Tianjin, are ranked second and third with donations of 103.4 million yuan (US$12.4 million) and 83.6 million yuan (US$10.1 million), respectively.


Rupert Hoogewerf has become famous in China over the past five years for tracking down the country's super-wealthy. He previously worked for Forbes and Euromoney Institutional Investor.


This is Hoogewerf's second annual list of top mainland philanthropists. He said assessments are based on the candidates' cumulative donations since 2003.


The 50 people on the list have donated a total of 1.4 billion yuan (US$169.2 million) since 2003. Twenty-four are also included on the 2004 list of China's richest people, up from 17 the previous year.


Many of China's wealthy claim that for various reasons they fear making their donations public, or making them at all. Huang Guangyu, China's wealthiest person in 2004, and Ding Lei, number one in 2003, began making their donations public last year.


Most contributions are made in the education and health care sectors.


Huang Rulun made his donations mainly to education and poverty relief, as well as to the anti-SARS campaign.


Yu Pengnian, founder of Hong Kong Yu's Charitable Foundation and the Shenzhen Yu Pengnian Social Welfare Association, last year launched the nationwide Pengnian Brightness Action campaign.


He plans to spend 500 million yuan (US$60.4 million) providing free operations for 100,000 to 150,000 cataract sufferers in depressed areas over a five-year period.


Yu's worth is reported to be 3 billion yuan (US$361 million).


On April 12, Hoogewerf released his first list of top corporate donors, which includes 24 state-owned enterprises, four private companies and 22 multinationals.


Singapore's Asia Pulp & Paper Co. ranks first with total donations of more than 200 million yuan (US$24 million) since 2003.


Foxconn Group, an IT company in Taiwan, ranks second with 96.9 million yuan (US$11.7 million).


(China.org.cn by Wang Zhiyong, April 15, 2005)


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