KUALA LUMPUR: Robert Kuok remains Malaysia’s wealthiest person, with three newcomers making their debut in the latest edition of Forbes’ Malaysia ‘50 Richest’ list.

Kuok saw his wealth growing to US$11.14 billion, up from US$10 billion previously.

Kuok, 93, who made it to the list for the 12th straight year, controls an empire that includes palm oil, shipping and property through the Kuok Group.

Coming in second was banking mogul Tan Sri Quek Leng Chan of the Hong Leong Group, with a net worth of US$6.8 billion, up from US$5.3 billion last year.

Quek replaced Tan Sri Ananda Krishnan, who fell to third spot this year as his wealth declined 12.2 per cent to US$6.5 billion amid uncertainty around his debt-laden Indian telecom firm Aircel, said Forbes in a statement today.

Gaming tycoon Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay of Genting Group took sixth spot with a net worth of US$4.45 billion, down slightly mainly due to the weaker ringgit.

The three Malaysians who made their maiden entry into the list were brothers Koon Poh Ming and Poh Keong (13th with US$1.05 billion), and Wong Thean Soon (39th with US$330 million) from listed electronic services company My E.G. Services Bhd (MyEG).

The Koon brothers are the two biggest shareholders of Press Metal Bhd, Southeast Asia’s largest integrated aluminium producer.

Forbes said Press Metal shares had surged nearly 2.5 times in the past year, giving the company a market capitalisation of US$2 billion.

“Wong launched the company (MyEG) in 2000 to improve interactions between Malaysian citizens and their government in areas such as immigration, licensing, utilities and tax payments,” it said.

The only woman who qualified for the list is 94-year old cofounder of Selangor Properties, Puan Sri Chong Chook Yew, who was 43rd with a net worth of US$285 million.

The minimum net worth to make it on to the list this year is US$210 million, up from US$195 million a year ago.

The top 10 richest individuals in Malaysia are:

1) Robert Kuok – US$11.4 billion