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Two Belgians on billionaire list

Published on 09/03/2007

9 March 2007

BRUSSELS – Two Belgians, Albert Frère and Patokh Chodiev, are on the list of world’s billionaires published by Forbes magazine.

Albert Frère is 279th and Patokh Chodiev is 538th on the list of the world’s richest people. Both are “self made men,” who built up their own fortunes. The circle of billionaires may be growing, but Microsoft founder Bill Gates continues to top the list.

Albert Frère’s fortune is estimated at 3.1 billion dollars, which he made from investments in industry, specifically in areas like energy and media. Frère, now 81, started his career by buying up Walloon steel companies. During the steel industry crisis in the 1970s he sold his businesses and invested his fortune in various other sectors.

Forbes calls Albert Frère a “workaholic,” who has told anyone that will listen that he will never retire.

Patokh Chodiev (54) was born in Uzbekistan and currently lives in Kazakhstan. He became a naturalised Belgian citizen on 25 June 1997. His fortune is estimated at 1.9 billion dollars and is largely the result of investments in the metal and mining industries in post-Communist Kazakhstan. He studied international law and lived in Japan for a while.

The list of billionaires includes some 946 people now, thanks to 153 new people. Together their assets amount to 3,500 billion dollars. Bill Gates is still the richest person in the world, with a fortune of 56 billion dollars.

[Copyright Expatica News 2007]

Subject: Belgian news