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Norway is right to reassess its sovereign wealth fund

Posted on 10 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund is large (Ministry of Finance 2013). At $890 billion, it is the largest sovereign wealth fund in existence, holding over 1% of almost every listed stock in the world.
However, as the fund approaches $180,000 for every man, woman, and child in Norway, there have been calls to reassess the way it is managed – from divesting oil and gas stocks to reducing the amount spent each year. Recent research provides some support for these calls, by treating above- and below-ground wealth as two sides of the same coin for the first time (van den Bremer et al. 2014)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway to boost oil revenue spending in 2015 to fund tax cuts

Posted on 09 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway cut its growth forecast on Wednesday, citing lower oil prices and investments, and said it may lift a cap on how much of the country’s $850 billion sovereign wealth fund it can spend each year. In its first budget since taking power last year, the centre-right government of Prime Minister Erna Solberg said it will spend 3 percent of the fund’s value in 2015, up from 2.8 percent in 2014, using the money to pay for tax cuts.
That is still below the 4 percent cap on spending from the fund, into which revenues from oil, Norway’s biggest industry, are routed. But Finance Minister Siv Jensen said she was appointing a commission to examine whether the rule, for long a sacred cow of fiscal policy, needs to be changed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman had ‘inappropriate’ relationship with Libyan fund

Posted on 07 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A lawyer seconded to the Libyan Investment Authority, which is suing Goldman Sachs over $1 billion of trades that ended up worthless, was “shocked” by the bank’s “inappropriate” relationship with the fund, according to court filings.
In a suit filed at London’s High Court, the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) claims the Wall Street investment bank exploited a position of trust by encouraging the sovereign wealth fund to invest more than $1 billion in a series of equity derivatives trades that expired as worthless in 2011………………………………………..Full Article: Source

High Court Rejects Abu Dhabi Fund’s $7.5B Citigroup Dispute

Posted on 07 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected a bid by Abu Dhabi’s massive sovereign wealth fund to continue pursuing Citigroup Inc. for funds lost in a $7.5 billion investment deal.
The high court said in a one-line order released Monday morning that it would not review an arbitration panel’s 2011 ruling in favor of Citigroup and against the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. Representatives for Abu Dhabi were not immediately available for comment Monday. Citigroup declined to comment………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman Special Relationship With LIA Fund Ends in Court

Posted on 06 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When the Libyan Investment Authority started out in 2007, it had about $60 billion, office space in Tripoli and a lot to learn. Goldman Sachs Group Inc., keen to do business with the sovereign wealth fund, offered to help.
Goldman Sachs bankers gave LIA staff training at its London office and spent time in Tripoli showing them how to monitor markets. The bank characterized it as a “special trusting type of relationship,” the LIA said in documents in a London lawsuit………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SWF: Between constitutional and development imperatives

Posted on 01 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The legality and desirability of the institution of a Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) in Nigeria are not one and the same thing. While determination of the former is an exclusive preserve of the law court and at the moment sub judice, the latter which is not a subject of dispute before any adjudicating body is, however, the focus of this piece.
SWFs the world over are attaining a position of universal prominence since the 2008 global economic recession when they played critical stabilizing role, and their managers, now widely classified among the new “Movers and Shakers” of the post-crisis world economic order, though may share common prospects; they essentially are faced with divergent challenges across different climes – Nigeria’s experience is a case in point………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Probe into 1MDB financial misconduct now, says anti-graft group

Posted on 01 October 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) must begin an immediate inquiry into the troubled sovereign fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), an anti-corruption watch group said.
The Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) said today the PAC should call “all actors involved” for the inquiry into the fund’s massive debts, dubious land deals and secrecy over its transactions as 1MDB was a burden to the country’s national debt. It said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who is chairman of 1MDB’s advisory board, should provide an answer to the fund’s troubled developments………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Khazanah hopes govt enacts MAS Act early next year

Posted on 30 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Khazanah Nasional Bhd hopes the government will enact the “MAS Act” early next year, before MAS NewCo is set up in the middle of next year. According to the RM6 billion recovery plan for MAS, its shares will be delisted from Bursa Malaysia by year-end and a new company (Newco) will be created to carry on the airline’s business.
To facilitate the restructuring of the national carrier in a comprehensive, timely and holistic manner, the government will table a new law in Parliament called the MAS Act. Managing Director Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar said the act is an important enabling act, which the Prime Minister is expected to table in Parliament next week……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Nigeria: Suit On Sovereign Fund Adjourned Till Jan 26

Posted on 26 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Supreme Court on Tuesday said the legal tussle over the creation of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) was not ready for hearing. The case has been fixed for January 26, 2015. Presiding judge, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, said the case was not ripe for hearing because vital documents were not in the case file.
“In order to hear the case, it is necessary for counsels to go to the registry and make sure that all necessary processes were in the file,” Mahmud said. The sovereign wealth fund manages the surplus income produced from Nigeria’s excess oil reserves on behalf of the states and federal governments………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman denies duping Gaddafi

Posted on 23 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs responds to accusations that Libya’s sovereign wealth fund was cheated out of more than $1bn during the Gaddafi era. The Telegraph reports that Goldman Sachs has hit back at allegations that the Wall Street giant duped Libya’s $60bn sovereign wealth fund into trades that lost the country vast sums of money while making the bank hundreds of millions in profits.
In court documents, Goldman denied that the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) had been ‘financially illiterate’ when entering into trades that proved worthless, and rejected claims that its bankers had cosied up to LIA officials. It is also claiming unspecified damages against the LIA………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman Sachs Files Counter Claim Against Libyan Investment Authority

Posted on 23 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS) has defended itself against the allegations from the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA). Earlier this year, the Libyan Investment Authority filed a suit against Goldman Sachs, alleging that the bank had forced it to enter several equity derivative transactions worth more than $1 billion.
LIA added that these transactions were extremely risky and poorly documented by the investment bank, which sought to take advantage of the limited financial and legal expertise of LIA and its unsophisticated employees. LIA maintained that the disputed deals offered by Goldman adversely affected the trust and confidence the wealth fund had established with the investment bank………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nigeria: Sovereign Wealth Fund: Between Legality and Desirability

Posted on 22 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nigeria’s Supreme Court will be entertaining a suit filed by the 36 states of the federation against the federal government on the legality of the Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF). But the legality and desirability of the institution of a SWF in Nigeria are not one and the same thing.
The legality and desirability of the institution of a Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) in Nigeria are not one and the same thing. While determination of the former is an exclusive preserve of the law court and at the moment sub judice, the latter which is not a subject of dispute before any adjudicating body is, however, the focus of this piece………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman defence lifts veil on LIA relationship

Posted on 22 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It is a fiercely contested $1bn lawsuit over disputed derivatives transactions and has pitted Libya’s Investment Authority against investment bank Goldman Sachs.
But behind the dry subject matter, the suit has thrown up colourful allegations that the bank offered training programmes, gifts, overseas trips and even a much coveted internship as it sought to win business from the sovereign wealth fund set up to invest the country’s vast oil wealth………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman Sachs reveals ties to Gaddafi-era Libya fund

Posted on 22 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs has admitted in court documents to having used small gifts, occasional travel and an internship to cement its ties with Libya’s sovereign wealth fund under Muammar Gaddafi, the Financial Times reported today.
The details were in the investment bank’s defence to a lawsuit filed by the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) in London in January, which accused Goldman Sachs of exploiting its position to make money on failed derivative trades………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SEC probing Goldman Sachs internship for brother of Libyan ex-official: WSJ

Posted on 22 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

U.S. regulators are investigating a Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N) internship for the brother of a former official at Libya’s sovereign wealth fund and perks allegedly offered by the bank to the fund, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter.
As part of an ongoing investigation into Goldman’s ties to Libya’s sovereign wealth fund, the Securities and Exchange Commission is reviewing the company’s decision in June 2008 to hire the brother of Mustafa Zarti, then deputy chief of the Libyan Investment Authority, as an intern, the WSJ report said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds cheer FPI framework; double assets in 10 months

Posted on 22 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Recent regulatory changes introduced by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) with regards to foreign investors seem to have gone down well with sovereign wealth funds (SWFs), who have more than doubled their equity assets in the last 10-12 months.
Just a couple of months after Sebi issued the draft regulations for foreign portfolio investor (FPI) regime, SWFs’ assets under custody (AUC) surged to their highest ever at $18.07 billion in December, 2013. Since then, SWFs have further raised their equity holdings, with AUCs surging past $24 billion — 150% higher than the levels seen just before the draft in September 2013………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds cheer FPI framework; double assets in 10 months

Posted on 19 September 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Recent regulatory changes introduced by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) with regards to foreign investors seem to have gone down well with sovereign wealth funds (SWFs), who have more than doubled their equity assets in the last 10-12 months.
Just a couple of months after Sebi issued the draft regulations for foreign portfolio investor (FPI) regime, SWFs’ assets under custody (AUC) surged to their highest ever at $18.07 billion in December, 2013. Since then, SWFs have further raised their equity holdings, with AUCs surging past $24 billion — 150% higher than the levels seen just before the draft in September 2013……………………………………..Full Article: Source

Tanzania Sets Up Special Unit to Scrutinise Gas Revenues and Wealth Fund

Posted on 26 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Tanzania’s government is forming a special unit to monitor its natural resource revenues from major gas discoveries that promise to lift the country from poverty and free it from dependency on foreign aid in the coming decades.
The east African nation has enough natural gas, more than 50.5 trillion cubic feet discovered so far, to provide energy independence and bring significant export revenues. But Tanzania lacks experience in exploiting oil and gas, so relies on contracts with foreign companies such as Statoil of Norway and ExxonMobile to develop its immense offshore finds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Societe Generale’s Libya case to run to court

Posted on 25 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

French bank has opted against getting $1.5bn bribery case stemming from Gaddafi days thrown out. Societe Generale has opted to allow a bribery case brought by Libya’s sovereign wealth fund to go to court, having previously indicated that it would attempt to have the case thrown out.
The French bank is accused by the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), which is believed to control about $60bn (£36bn) of the country’s wealth, of paying some $58m in bribes to key officials in the Gaddafi regime and at the top of the fund to smooth over trades that lost the LIA hundreds of millions, in the years before Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in 2011………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libyan sovereign wealth fund set to sue SocGen in alleged bribery case

Posted on 25 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Société Générale has decided against filing a summary judgment application in the UK High Court over its earlier plea to have a bribery-linked lawsuit filed against it by Libya’s sovereign wealth fund to be dismissed.
The Libyan Investment Authority, which apparently oversees assets worth almost $60bn, has charged SocGen with paying about $58m in bribes to influential members of the erstwhile Gaddafi regime - including senior LIA executives - to smooth over transactions that cost the state-backed fund hundreds of millions of dollars………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman withdraws attempt to stop $1bn Libya fund dispute

Posted on 20 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs has withdrawn an application to have a $1bn lawsuit filed by the Libyan Investment Authority, a former client, thrown out of an English court ahead of trial. The US investment bank has withdrawn its request for a summary judgment in the dispute lodged at the High Court, it confirmed on Tuesday.
A summary judgment is when a matter is determined before trial, and Goldman’s withdrawal of its application removes one hurdle that the LIA would have had to overcome before getting a full hearing of the evidence in court………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman to face Libya’s sovereign wealth fund in court over trades

Posted on 20 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs and Libya’s sovereign wealth fund are set to meet in a London court over claims the Wall Street bank exploited a position of trust by encouraging the fund to invest more than $1 billion in trades that ended up worthless.
Goldman had filed a summary judgment application - a request to decide a claim without going to trial - in the case brought by the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) in January, but has recently withdrawn it, the LIA said in a statement. “Following the serving of the LIA’s reply evidence, Goldman Sachs has withdrawn its summary judgment application,” the LIA said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Tanzania sets up special unit to scrutinise gas revenues and wealth fund

Posted on 15 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Tanzania’s government is forming a special unit to monitor its natural resource revenues from major gas discoveries that promise to lift the country from poverty and free it from dependency on foreign aid in the coming decades.
The east African nation has enough natural gas, more than 50.5 trillion cubic feet discovered so far, to provide energy independence and bring significant export revenues. But Tanzania lacks experience in exploiting oil and gas, so relies on contracts with foreign companies such as Statoil of Norway and ExxonMobile to develop its immense offshore finds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund to reveal voting intentions

Posted on 08 August 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund will start issuing public statements, to declare which way it intends to vote on issues being presented at companies’ annual meetings, the fund told the Financial Times. “We think this (move) will contribute to the transparency of how we manage the fund and assess questions for voting,” the paper quoted the institution as saying.
The fund, which is run by Norges Bank Investment Management, is known for questioning executive pay and accountability at companies in which it owns a stake………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Australian Super backtracked on airport valuation: Future Fund

Posted on 02 July 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Future Fund has accused AustralianSuper of backtracking on its own valuation of the Perth Airport, a dispute which is at the heart of the legal case one of the country’s biggest superannuation funds is waging against Australia’s sovereign wealth fund. According to the defence the Future Fund has lodged with the Supreme Court of Victoria, AustralianSuper had previously agreed with the now disputed valuation and it believes AustralianSuper may be pursuing the legal action in a bid to achieve a commercial settlement.
A spokesperson for the Future Fund told Financial Standard that the “Future Fund is pleased to have finally been provided with the opportunity to lodge its defence with the Victorian Supreme Court. We have consistently and strongly maintained that Future Fund has acted appropriately at all times, and we totally reject the allegations of wrongful conduct that have been made. “Future Fund remains confident in its position and will vigorously defend this matter.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

China’s CIC Vows to Improve Management After Irregularities Uncovered

Posted on 20 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China Investment Corp., the nation’s sovereign-wealth fund, said Thursday that it plans to improve the management of its overseas investments after it was publicly criticized by the government’s auditing agency for a string of irregularities that led to unspecified losses.
China’s National Audit Office said Wednesday that CIC was found to have management shortcomings that resulted in overseas losses on six projects between 2008 and 2012. The extent of the losses wasn’t given. The auditing agency blamed the losses at CIC on dereliction of duty by management, insufficient due diligence and poor post-investment management……………………………………….Full Article: Source

$5b-plus irregularities at China fund, banks

Posted on 20 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Irregularities amounting to more than $5 billion have been found at China’s sovereign wealth fund and two large state-owned banks, according to the state auditor, offering a glimpse into the opaque management of government-controlled firms.
China Investment Corporation (CIC), Bank of China and Agricultural Development Bank of China violated regulations in areas including asset selling, loan issuance and fraudulent invoicing, according to the National Audit Office (NAO). “The audit found CIC breached rules on overseas investment and risk control, domestic subsidiaries operation and financial management,” the NAO said in a statement………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Closer Look: Audit of CIC Shows Its Corporate Governance Must Be Enhanced

Posted on 20 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China Investment Corp. (CIC), the country’s US$ 575 billion sovereign wealth fund, has been blamed by the state auditor for flaws in its management of both domestic and overseas investment projects, leading to losses. On June 18, the National Audit Office issued a report on CIC’s operations in 2012. It criticized CIC for a series of irregularities in investment assessments, subsidiary operations, and personnel and financial management.
Internal and external supervision are crucial for a sovereign wealth fund like CIC. The auditor’s report rings the alarm and should prompt the sovereign wealth fund to reexamine itself. However, assessing the investment performance of a sovereign wealth fund is not straightforward………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chinese sovereign wealth fund mismanaged investments

Posted on 19 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China Investment Corp failed to conduct adequate due diligence on overseas investments which led to losses, the mainland’s auditor finds. The mainland’s US$575 billion sovereign wealth fund mismanaged some of its overseas investments between 2008 and last year that led to losses, the National Audit Office said yesterday without specifying the size of the loss.
It said some employees of China Investment Corp (CIC) did not conduct adequate due diligence before investing in 12 overseas projects in the past six years. And they subsequently also failed to track the performance of those investments, it said………………………………….Full Article: Source

Auditor blames CIC

Posted on 19 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Mismanagement at China Investment Corp, the nation’s US$575 billion sovereign wealth fund, led to overseas investment losses that could widen, according to the National Audit Office.
A dereliction of duty by managers and inadequate due diligence and post- investment management were identified in 12 investments made abroad by the fund between 2008 and 2013, according to results of an audit conducted last year. Six of the deals were unprofitable, four of them had unrealized losses, and two may potentially lose money. The report released yesterday did not name the investments or disclose their size………………………………….Full Article: Source

China Audit Found Irregularities at Wealth Fund, Two State Banks

Posted on 19 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s government auditing agency said Wednesday that last year it found financial irregularities at two big state banks and the nation’s sovereign-wealth fund and that all three need to tighten their management.
The National Audit Office said it had uncovered management failures related to investments at China Investment Corp., the country’s sovereign-wealth fund, as well as irregular lending at Bank of China Ltd and Agricultural Development Bank of China.The auditor said that CIC and the state banks had largely addressed the problems as of May………………………………….Full Article: Source

CCI gives green signal to Amex-Qatar Holding joint venture

Posted on 19 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Fair trade watchdog CCI has approved the proposed joint venture between American Express and Juweel Investors, part of sovereign wealth fund Qatar Holding, saying the deal is unlikely to have an adverse impact on competition in India.
Under the deal, American Express’ global business travel services, which also has India presence, would be transferred to the new joint venture — GBT III B V. The joint venture is between American Express and Juweel — a special purpose vehicle set up by Qatar Holding and certain other investors. “The Commission is of the opinion that the proposed combination is not likely to have an appreciable adverse effect on competition in India,” CCI said in an order………………………………….Full Article: Source

Indonesian coal miner Bumi gets lender approval for CIC deal

Posted on 12 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Indonesian coal miner PT Bumi Resources said on Wednesday its lenders had agreed to close a crucial debt-to-equity swap with Chinese sovereign wealth fund CIC, enabling it to pay the coupon on its 2016 bonds.
In October, CIC agreed to convert the $1.3 billion debt it was owed by Bumi Resources into stakes in the Indonesian company and associated subsidiaries………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway fund RM2.15 TRILLION, Malaysia’s RM12.67 billion: Nurul calls for set-up of transparency panel to oversee O&G wealth

Posted on 12 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Prime Minister Should Adopt A Malaysian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) For Better Oversight and Governance Over Petroleum Revenues. For example, whilst 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB)’s RM5.8 billion loan is guaranteed by the government, the fund – formerly a sovereign wealth fund called the Terengganu Investment Authority set up in 2008 and backed by petroleum royalties due to the state from the Federal government - lacks the transparency and disclosure mechanisms necessary to generate and develop public confidence in its management.
Norway is one such country, having set up the Government Pension Fund – Global (previously known as The Petroleum Fund of Norway) in 1990 into which surplus wealth from petroleum income was to be deposited in order to counter the effects of an anticipated decline in income………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kazakh Wealth Fund Calls Alliance Bank Creditors to Save Lender

Posted on 02 June 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Kazakhstan’s sovereign wealth fund urged creditors of Alliance Bank to support its proposed debt restructuring, saying the lender may otherwise face bankruptcy at the hands of regulators.
Alliance Bank, seeking to overhaul its debt for a second time since 2010, is “in a critical financial situation,” Yelena Bakhmutova, a deputy chief executive officer at sovereign wealth fund Samruk-Kazyna, said today by phone from the Kazakh capital Astana. “We are not ready to save Alliance Bank alone,” she said…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Singapore PM demands apology from blogger on GIC post

Posted on 20 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has demanded an apology from a local blogger for a posting seen as accusing him of corruption. Lawyer Davinder Singh wrote to Roy Ngerng Yi Ling on Sunday asking him to take down the original article as well as the links posted on his Facebook pages and to post an apology by Wednesday.
Singh said the allegations by Ngerng in his May 15 blog post were “false and baseless”. “The article means and is understood to mean that Mr Lee Hsien Loong, the Prime Minister of Singapore and the chairman of GIC, is guilty of criminal misappropriation of the monies paid by Singaporeans to the CPF (Central Provident Fund),” Singh wrote in the letter. GIC is a sovereign wealth fund that manages more than $100 billion of the city-state’s foreign reserves. CPF is the state pension fund……………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chile wealth fund advisor slams government pension fund plan

Posted on 19 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Economist and a senior advisor at Chile’s sovereign wealth fund casts doubt on the rationale behind the new government’s plans for a state competitor to the private pension funds. A senior figure in Chile’s sovereign wealth fund has called the Chilean government’s plan for a new state-backed pension provider “a very bad idea”.
The new Chilean government, which assumed office as president on 11 March, plans to introduce a state-backed pension provider to compete with private pension administrators, in what could be the biggest shake-up of the country’s pension system for more than a decade…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Give SWF Constitutional Foundation

Posted on 19 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

During a presentation to the National Conference Committee on Public Revenue and Finance, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) suggested that the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) be included in the country’s constitution. The fund has been mired in controversy because it is clandestinely used as a substitute for the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to provide long-term savings for economic stabilisation, development of infrastructure and generational equity.
The governors of the 36 states have contended that such a move is unknown to law and are asking the Supreme Court to truncate the attempt by the federal government to withdraw $2 billion from the ECA for investment in the SWF. The governors had alleged that from the $20 billion in the account in 2008, the federal government had depleted it to $3.7 billion…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Parliament discuss Kuwaiti SWF overseas investments

Posted on 15 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The National Assembly is currently holding a closed-door session to discuss Kuwait’s foreign investments with the state sovereign fund, Kuwait Investment Authority. Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim ordered the main meeting hall to be cleared out of visitors as per the request of Finance Minister Anas Al-Saleh on Wednesday after the parliament had agreed a day earlier to hold two-hour talks on the matter.
KIA is expected to present a detailed report on its activities to the lawmakers, the minister had earlier informed the parliament. The report will highlight assessments, analyses, investment decisions, strategies, adopted procedures, performance and the revenue accumulated by the Kuwaiti sovereign fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Barclays Ex-CEO Diamond Facing Questioning Over Qatar Deal

Posted on 13 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

U.K. prosecutors will question Robert Diamond, former chief executive officer of Barclays Plc (BARC), in a probe into fees paid to Qatar’s sovereign-wealth fund as the bank sought to raise money to avoid a government bailout, according to a person familiar with the matter.
The investigation centers on 322 million pounds ($544 million) the London-based bank paid the Qatar Investment Authority as it was raising 7 billion pounds in 2008 from investors, including the Qataris, during the financial crisis. Diamond was head of Barclays’s investment bank at the time of the fundraising………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Banks’ FCPA lessons from Libya

Posted on 13 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Regulatory scrutiny has increased FCPA risks for private equity and hedge funds in their dealings with sovereign wealth funds.
The US Department of Justice (DoJ) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are openly targeting the financial industry, and in particular private equity firms and hedge funds, in enforcing the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Their focus has intensified in recent months……………………………………….Full Article: Source

CBN’s quest for constitutional backing for SWF

Posted on 12 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), a few days ago, reopened the de­bate on the legality, or otherwise, of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) when it sought the assistance of the Public Finance Committee of the ongoing National Conference for a full constitutional provision for the fund.
The establishment of the fund by President Goodluck Jonathan in 2012 to replace the Excess Crude Account (ECA) has been a contentious legal issue that has split the Federal Government and state governors………………………………………..Full Article: Source

CBN Calls for Inclusion of Sovereign Wealth Fund in the Constitution

Posted on 08 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The CBN has suggested to the National Conference Committee on Public Revenue and Finance to ensure that the country’s Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) is included in the constitution. The acting Governor of CBN, Serah Alade, who was represented by Deputy Governor, Corporate Services, Alhaji Suleman Barau, gave the advice during a presentation to the committee yesterday in Abuja.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Alade said the fund was intended to replace the Excess Crude Account (ECA), in order to provide long term savings for economic stabilisation, development of infrastructure and generational equity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nigeria: CBN wants constitutional backing for Sovereign Wealth Fund

Posted on 07 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), on Tuesday, lauded the establishment of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), but called for full constitutional provision for tue fund. The country’s apex bank said it was necessary for Nigeria “to save for the rainy day.”
Acting Governor of CBN, Dr Sarah Alade, while appearing before the national conference committee on public finance, which invited her for a chat, justified the establishment of the fund, saying it was necessary to invest in the future. She also advocated the creation of the office of Accountant-General for Federal Government, which would be separated from the existing office of the Accountant-General of the federation(AGF)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya’s Sovereign Wealth Fund Looks Forward… And Back, At Goldman Sachs

Posted on 05 May 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Earlier this year the Libyan Investment Authority commenced litigation against Goldman to try to recover up to US$1.3 billion of losses the fund incurred because of equity derivatives sold by the US bank in 2008.
But Goldman is also being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Justice because of efforts it is alleged to have made to help redress those losses, through a proposed $50 million payment through an Amsterdam-based and Libyan-controlled institution called Palladyne. The circumstances are complicated; follow the link at the top to the Euromoney article to see more, and to learn about a memo at the heart of the DOJ’s case………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Formula One backlash haunts Norway wealth fund as hearing starts

Posted on 24 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $850 billion sovereign wealth fund needs to prepare its arguments to persuade lawmakers it can handle an expansion into private equity after an investment in Formula One backfired.
Yngve Slyngstad, the fund’s chief executive officer, and central bank Governor Oeystein Olsen, who oversees the fund, have been summoned to testify tomorrow at a Finance Committee hearing at the Oslo parliament………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Goldman Sachs to seek early dismissal of Libya Wealth Fund suit

Posted on 22 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) will seek to have a $1 billion lawsuit by the Libyan Investment Authority thrown out before trial. The bank will ask a London judge to decide whether the case has a realistic chance of success and issue a so-called summary judgment, according to court documents released this week.
Libya’s sovereign wealth fund says Goldman made about $350 million selling investments that turned out to be worthless. The LIA said in a statement it “considers this application to be misconceived and looks forward to full and proper determination of all issues by the English court.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Libya goes head to head with SocGen in $1.5 bln lawsuit

Posted on 17 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) has filed a $1.5 billion lawsuit against Société Générale (SocGen), claiming the French investment bank helped channel bribes worth tens of millions of dollars to associates of Saif al-Islam, the son of the former Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi.
The LIA, a $60 billion fund set up to invest the country’s vast oil wealth, alleges that SocGen fraudulently paid over $58 million to a company called Leinada for “advisory services”. These services related to $2.1 billion of derivatives trades that the LIA entered into with SocGen between 2007 and 2009………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB’s accounts finally submitted

Posted on 16 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) has submitted its long-awaited accounts for the financial year ended March 31, 2013 on April 9, according to the Companies Commission of Malaysia (SSM). “1MDB has submitted the company’s annual return together with the audited financial statement for the financial year ended March 31, 2013 on April 9, 2014,” SSM said.
“As such, 1MDB has complied with the requirement of section 165(4) Companies Act 1965 (Act 125) which requires company to submit its annual return within one month after the annual general meeting (AGM),” it added………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Bill would let landlords garnish Permanent Fund dividends

Posted on 11 April 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Landlords would be entitled to garnish the Permanent Fund dividends of renters under a bill approved by a House committee. House Bill 282 updates the Alaska Landlord and Tenant Act for the first time in decades.
The House Judiciary moved the bill Wednesday to the full House. It would have to be passed by both the House and Senate before the legislative session ends April 20 to become law. Among other things, the bill allows landlords to garnish the PFDs of tenants to cover repairs that cost more than the renter’s security deposit………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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