New Zealand's richest man has climbed the rankings of Forbes magazine's richest people in the world, accumulating an estimated $4.5 billion in the past year.

Kiwi billionaire Graeme Hart came in at No 133 on the list of Forbes billionaires with an estimated net worth of US$9.5b ($13.5b).

A year earlier Hart was ranked No 178, with a net wealth estimated at US$6.4b.

Hart is now worth more than ever before. He debuted on the Forbes billionaires list in 2008, with an estimated net worth of $5.1b.


Hart is a self-made man and has accumulated a packaging empire under Rank Group.

Famously private, Hart, who is married with two children, hasn't given an interview to the New Zealand press in about a decade.

Hart is the second wealthiest person in Australasia. Mining tycoon Gina Rinehart is the richest, ranking at No 69 on the Forbes list with a wealth estimated at $15b.

He is richer than entrepreneur Richard Branson, who is ranked No 324 and worth $5b.

New Zealand's second-richest man, Richard Chandler, was ranked at No 1098.

Chandler is worth $1.91b, a drop from $2.45b last year.

For the fourth time in a row, Bill Gates was named as the richest man in the world, with an estimated fortune of $86b and Warren Buffett came in at second place with a net worth of $75.6b.

Amazon's chief executive Jeff Bezos came in third place, with $72b, up from $27b the previous year, making him the biggest wealth gainer on the list.

He was followed by Zara boss Amancio Ortega with $71.3b, and then Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in fifth place with an estimated worth of $69.1b.

Donald Trump's fortune has fallen by an estimated $200 million since he took office, according to Forbes magazine, plunging him more than 200 rungs down the worldwide wealth rankings.

Trump was ranked at No 544, with a net worth of around $3.5 billion.