Between 2010 and 2016, donations from the top 100 philanthropists in mainland China more than tripled to £3.6bn. What’s behind this rise in charitable giving?

China has a long tradition of philanthropy but it stagnated after the 1949 communist revolution when private philanthropic initiatives and NGOs were shut down and foreign organisations told to leave the country. Since the market reforms that have accelerated this century, private wealth has spiralled – China accounted for 80 out of 113 of Asia’s new billionaire entrepreneurs in 2015 – and philanthropy has seen a resurgence. Between 2010 and 2016, donations from the top 100 philanthropists in mainland China more than tripled to $4.6bn (£3.6bn) and 46 of the wealthiest 200 now have foundations.

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