40. Zong Qinghou – $10.8 billion
Zong Qinghou is the richest Chinese politician.
The 71-year-old made his $10.8 billion fortune by selling fizzy soft drinks through his company – Hangzhou Wahaha Group. Wa-ha-ha not only sounds but also translates hilariously – “laughing child.” No need for further marketing here!
Zong Qinghou’s incredible influence on the Chinese consumer market made him an obvious pick for politics. He serves as a delegate to the Chinese National People’s Congress since 2002. His fellow countrymen granted him honorary titles like “Outstanding Builder of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics.”
Zong is exactly the workaholic you would normally expect from a country known to deliver most of the consumer goods we use today, and aspiring to become the world’s largest economy. His only declared hobbies are drinking tea and smoking cigarettes.