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Libyan Investment Authority’s case against Goldman Sachs and SocGen is back on

Posted on 03 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Rival factions at the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) have agreed to give their backing to accountancy firm BDO to manage their case against Goldman Sachs and Societe Generale, getting the lawsuit back on track after a three-month hiatus. The fund sued the two banks for a combined $3.5bn last year over losses it made during the Gaddafi era before Libya’s 2011 uprising.
The LIA claims that Goldman and SocGen abused their positions advising the sovereign wealth fund at the time, resulting in deals which lost the fund billions of dollars but gave lucrative payoffs to the banks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libyan fund suing banks gets a break

Posted on 03 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A judge has ruled that an interim receiver can represent the Libyan Investment Authority in its £1 billion-plus lawsuit against Goldman Sachs and Societe Generale.
Mr Justice Flaux yesterday approved an application by the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), the country’s sovereign wealth fund, to appoint BDO to manage its litigation against the two giant investment banks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kuwait parliament approves budget with $27 billion deficit

Posted on 02 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Kuwait’s parliament on Wednesday approved a state budget for the current fiscal year that envisages a budget deficit of 8.18 billion dinars ($27.0 billion) - nearly half total spending - because of low oil prices.
The budget for the year that began on April 1 features spending of 19.17 billion dinars and revenues of 12.2 billion dinars, assuming an average oil price of $45 a barrel during the year. The deficit of 8.18 billion dinars would be reached after the transfer of 10 percent of the revenues to the Future Generations Fund, part of Kuwait’s sovereign wealth fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

President gazettes wealth fund Statutory Instrument

Posted on 30 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

President Mugabe has gazetted a Statutory Instrument that gives effect to the Sovereign Wealth Fund that is expected to go a long way in reserving income from the country’s finite mineral resources for the benefit of future generations. The gazetting of the SI followed the gazetting of the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Zimbabwe Act (SWFZA) in November last year.
“His Excellency the President, in terms of section 1 (2) of the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Zimbabwe Act (Chapter 22:20) (No. 7 of 2014), hereby fixes the date of publications of this Statutory Instrument, as the date on which the said Act shall come into operation,” reads the Extraordinary Government Gazette published………………………………………..Full Article: Source

President Aliyev approves SOFAZ budget

Posted on 26 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

President Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree on the budget of Azerbaijan’s state oil fund SOFAZ for 2014. According to the document signed on June 24, the president approved the implementation of the SOFAZ budget with its revenues at over 12.731 billion manats and expenditures at over 10.117 billion manats.
The revenues of the budget were fulfilled at 109.5 percent wile the expenditures at 95.5 percent. SOFAZ, an entity that accumulates and manages Azerbaijan’s oil and gas revenues, was established in 1999 with assets worth $271 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Queen’s grant: Treasury still controls sovereign fund not Scots

Posted on 25 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Edinburgh’s takeover of Scottish Crown Estate assets may rile the royal household worried for its purse, but a misdirected fight could feed Scots’ republican instincts. The royal household is annoyed and appears to be picking a fight with Scotland’s government over the Queen’s share of the UK’s largest and most valuable property portfolio, the Crown Estate.
The publicly owned property empire, which takes in Ascot racecourse, London’s West End, Highland estates, farms, shopping centres, leisure parks, mining operations and most of the UK’s seabed and coastline, as well as lucrative licences to install wind farms and wave energy machines on the seabed, is worth billions of pounds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

African central bank governors to discuss sovereign wealth funds

Posted on 25 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Central bank governors drawn mainly from eastern and southern Africa will meet for a workshop to discuss the leveraging of sovereign wealth funds to establish economic stabilization on the continent. Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe John Mangudya will officially open the forum held in Switzerland on June 27, according to the forum’s organizer, the Macroeconomic and Financial Management Institute of Eastern and Southern Africa (MEFMI), which operates in 14 African countries.
“We are delighted to be hosting our member countries as well as some visiting countries’ central bank governors to discuss this most important issue which will help to establish long-term prosperity on our continent,” Caleb Fundanga, executive director of the MEFMI, told Xinhua Wednesday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nigerian Governors : Our problem with ECA, SWF

Posted on 25 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

State governors yesterday said they were opposed to the continued existence of the Excess Crude Account and the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) because both had been abused by the federal government. The chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum and Zamfara State Governor Abdulazeez Yari, stated this while speaking with reporters after the governors met President Muhammadu Buhari.
Yari said the sum of $10.3 billion was in the Excess Crude Account governors in 2013 when the governor forum became factionalised and sharing of money stopped. However, he said, the governors discovered that the fund, which is being operated by the federal government, declined inexplicably to $2.6 billion last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Bersih challenges PM to sue WSJ over claim that 1MDB helped fund BN campaign

Posted on 23 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak must disprove the Wall Street Journal’s claim that 1 Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) indirectly funded Barisan Nasional in Election 2013 and sue the publication over the article, Bersih 2.0 said today.
The electoral watchdog said the information to confirm or deny the claim was available to Najib, whom the group said must take action against the allegation. “We therefore again call on the Prime Minister to refute these allegations, and take legal action in his capacity as the Chair of 1MDB’s Board of Advisors in which he holds all the knowledge behind 1MDB transactions, if he so believes the WSJ report is untrue………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Has WSJ exposed 1MDB as BN’s political ATM?

Posted on 22 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) was founded by Prime Minister Najib Razak to be a “a strategic enabler for new ideas and sources of growth” and was given the mission “to drive sustainable economic development by forging strategic global partnerships and promoting FDI”.
There were many, both within the government circles as well as out of it which questioned its establishment, given that Khazanah Nasional Bhd was already specifically set up to meet these objectives. Why create a separate competing entity? While we have been fully aware of the shenanigans taking place in 1MDB previously, it was only in recent weeks we are beginning to discover some of the hidden agenda and objectives behind the company’s set up………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Future Fund and AustralianSuper settle court case

Posted on 19 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The legal battle between two of Australia’s funds management giants has ended with a multi-million dollar settlement. The Future Fund will pay AustralianSuper $7 million which will contribute to the legal costs of the country’s largest industry fund, a Future Fund spokesperson told Financial Standard.
“The Future Fund has chosen to settle the lawsuit for purely commercial reasons, to avoid ongoing legal costs and to enable the fund’s management to fully focus on the important task of continuing the strong growth of the fund for the benefit of all Australians,” the Future Fund said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Opposing Libya wealth fund factions seek common ground in bank lawsuits

Posted on 15 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Two opposing factions of the Libyan Investment Authority are to apply to the UK High Court for a receiver and a manager to handle two separate lawsuits- against Goldman Sachs and Société Générale.
Lawyers representing two opposing factions of the Libyan investment Authority are to apply to the UK High Court for a receiver and a manager to handle two separate lawsuits it is bringing against the Goldman Sachs and Société Générale. The LIA is suing Goldman and SocGen in two unrelated cases, but litigation has “ground to a halt” in recent months as two rival factions are each claiming to represent Libya’s sovereign wealth fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Legal framework for Egypt investment fund to be ready soon -state news

Posted on 15 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The legal framework for a proposed 5 billion Egyptian pound ($655 million) sovereign investment fund for Egypt will be complete within four months, the state news agency cited the planning minister as saying on Sunday.
The Egyptian government had on Thursday approved a proposal to set up the “Amlak” fund, which would act as the state’s investment arm and aims to encourage diversification and support sustainable economic and social development………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Egypt: Cabinet Approves SWF to Promote Egypt’s Wealth

Posted on 15 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The cabinet has approved a proposal to establish a Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) to develop Egypt’s wealth. The SWF, to be named as “Amlak” will be owned by the state through the National Investment Bank. The fund will cooperate with Arab and international investment funds in big national projects in Egypt.
Planning Minister Ashraf el Araby said some state assets will be professionally run by the SWF in realization of transparency and performance improving to achieve maximum economic profits and growth of the state assets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB probe in A-G’s hands, police finished their part, says home minister

Posted on 12 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Police have completed their probe into debt-laden 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) last month and is now waiting for further instructions from Attorney-General (A-G), Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said.
In referring to a police report lodged by former Batu Kawan Umno division vice-chairman Datuk Seri Khairuddin Abu Hassan, Zahid said the case was classified under Section 409 of the Penal Code for criminal breach of trust by public servant or agent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libyan factions reach pact to protect Goldman Sachs lawsuit

Posted on 12 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Two sides in power struggle for control of Libyan Investment Authority agree to appoint lawyers to take cases against Goldman and Societe Generale foward. Libya’s rival factions have put aside their differences to protect the country’s billion-dollar lawsuits against Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS-PB - news) and Societe Generale.
The Libyan Investment Authority, the country’s $67bn sovereign wealth fund, will on Friday apply to grant independent lawyers the authority to take forward London High Court fraud cases against the banks. The move is designed to safeguard proceedings against Goldman and SocGen, in the face of a power struggle between two sides who claim control of the LIA………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s oil fund criticises bundled board member voting

Posted on 03 June 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s NOK6.9trn (€812bn) sovereign wealth fund has spoken out against shareholder voting practices that stop asset owners from being able to single out individual company directors when they are unhappy with them.
In a paper on the issue, Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), which manages the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), warned it may vote against whole boards if the system means it cannot express dissatisfaction with an individual member of that board………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Zeti says report about 1MDB account in Singapore received

Posted on 27 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Bank Negara has received information from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) about an account connected to 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) in BSI Bank Ltd in the republic, Bank Negara governor Tan Sri Zeti Akhtar Aziz said.
In a Bernama report, Zeti said Bank Negara had received a report from MAS about an account linked to the debt-ridden strategic investment firm at the Swiss-based BSI Bank. She said a report from MAS would be shared with other Malaysian agencies, but declined to name them for confidentiality…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya’s Lawsuit Against Banks Threatened Amid “Chaos”

Posted on 27 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oh for the days of stability in the Middle East and the rule of Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi. At least then an entertaining lawsuit pitting the Libyan Investment Authority against Goldman Sachs Group Inc and Societe Generale might actually have proceeded.
As the escalating chaos in Libya has ripped apart the social fabric of the country, not to mention slashing oil production by as much as 1/3, the civil disarray that was predicted (by us) to become a factor in the lawsuit the oil rich nation had filed against large banks may come to pass…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Bahamas’ Sovereign Wealth Fund Bill 2014.

Posted on 22 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

“Sovereign wealth funds (are) where money is set aside for investment to benefit a country and its people,” Kenred Dorsett, Minister of the Environment and Housing, Bahamas said, adding that its purpose will be to “save and invest surplus funds derived from oil, gas minerals and other natural resources to provide a heritage for future generations of the citizens of the Bahamas, to support and increase savings for future generations, to enhance sustainable long term capital growth for The Bahamas and to support and promote any other strategic development objectives of The Bahamas.”
“This fund,” he said, “is for the holding of money derived not only from petroleum but from the development of the natural resources of the country. We are creating a mechanism to ensure that any excess profits gained from such ventures will benefit future generations of The Bahamas.” The House of Assembly morning session was cut short because opposition members did not have an opportunity to see the amendments to the bills. The House of Assembly will meet again on May 26………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya’s split SWF: risks torpedoing challenge against Western banks

Posted on 15 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Rival managements of the $67bn Libyan Investment Authority are set to fight in London courts over claims of Tripoli and Malta. The Libyan Investment Authority’s multi-billion pound claims against Goldman Sachs and Société Générale, both of which underwent pre-trial hearings in late 2014 and are due to go to trial next year, may be undermined by increasingly fractious infighting at the $67bn fund.
This week two separate law firms — neither of them Enyo Law, which had represented the LIA in its litigation until April before stepping away from their client — are due to face off in a London court, each representing a different faction that claims to control the fund………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC Win Approval to Redevelop UBS London Offices

Posted on 13 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

British Land Co. and GIC Pte, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, won approval to redevelop a building at the Broadgate office complex in the City of London financial district. The project, known as 100 Liverpool Street, was approved on Tuesday in London after a vote by the borough council.
The landlords will extend and refurbish the existing building to create a new 47,840 square-meter (515,000 square-foot) office property with restaurants and stores. GIC bought 50 percent of Broadgate, a 30-acre complex of office buildings, shops and restaurants, for about 1.7 billion pounds in 2013. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Bill introduced to include more of Temasek’s contributions in Govt revenue

Posted on 12 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A constitutional change was sought on Monday to make Temasek Holdings a bigger contributor to the Government’s coffers, as Singapore prepares for more social and infrastructure spending. The Constitution of the Republic of Singapore (Amendment) Bill, introduced in Parliament by Senior Minister of State for Finance Josephine Teo, will allow the Government to include Temasek as a contributor to its Net Investment Returns (NIR) framework.
The framework, set up in 2009, allows the Government to spend up to half of the long-term investment returns on the net assets managed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and GIC. The amendment to Singapore’s constitution will allow the Government to apply the framework to Temasek as well………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dramatic power struggle at Libyan wealth fund deals setback to $1.2bn Goldman Sachs lawsuit

Posted on 11 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Ousted chairman of Libyan Investment Authority challenges London legal proceedings over disputed losses from Gaddafi era. Libya’s billion-dollar lawsuit against Goldman Sachs has been dealt a fresh setback as a power struggle at the top of its $67bn wealth fund sees two rival law firms pitted against each other in the London courts.
The Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), the oil-rich nation’s sovereign wealth fund, is suing Goldman and Societe Generale, the French financial giant, in separate UK lawsuits worth a combined $3.3bn (£2.1bn), claiming the LIA lost billions at the banks’ hands during the Gaddafi era………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway gambling-selective

Posted on 08 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Sovereign Wealth Fund wagers money on betting while unlicensed gambling is frowned upon at home. A dependency organisation is critical to the move. Norway’s SWF has over NOK 3.48bn (some USD 473m/EUR 417.76m/GBP 311m at today’s ROE) invested in several real and virtual casinos, Vårt Land reports.
Actis’ (Norwegian Policy Network on Alcohol and Drugs) random examination of the SWF’s investment portfolio shows that most of this betting-related money is invested in the Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd – NOK 983.55m (about USD 133.54m/EUR 117.81m/GBP 87.7m)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya’s $1.2bn Goldman lawsuit hangs in balance after lawyers quit

Posted on 04 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Enyo Law steps down from Libyan Investment Authority’s London lawsuits against Goldman Sachs and Societe Generale. Libya’s attempt to sue Goldman Sachs for losing the state’s wealth fund more than $1bn (£650m) during the Gaddafi era has been dealt a severe setback, after lawyers walked away from the case.
City law firm Enyo, which has been acting on behalf of the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) in London court battles against Goldman and French bank Societe Generale, ceased to act as the LIA’s solicitors as of Tuesday morning, according to court documents seen by The Telegraph………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Abu Dhabi fund part of $1.9bn lawsuit against Norway gov’t

Posted on 29 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An Oslo court started to hear a $1.9 billion lawsuit by a group of international investors against Norway on Monday, in a case that challenges the country’s reputation as a predictable place to do business with little political risk.
Investors including Allianz, UBS, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and two Canadian pension funds are suing Norway over its decision to cut tariffs for using the Gassled pipeline network, arguing it was liable for the 15 billion crowns ($1.9 billion) in lost earnings they would suffer as a result through 2028………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Omani sovereign fund sues Bulgaria over CCB saga, lawyer claims

Posted on 28 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An Omani sovereign fund that held 30 per cent in Bulgaria’s Corporate Commercial Bank (CCB) has lodged court action against Bulgaria, seeking damages of 700 million euro, a lawyer for CCB’s majority shareholder claimed on April 27. The fund sought damages for the way Bulgarian state institutions treated CCB, Konstantin Simeonov told a Bulgarian breakfast TV show, but gave no further details and could not name the court where the complaint was filed, saying that it was an “European institution”.
CCB was put under the central bank’s administration on June 20 2014, which suspended shareholder rights – including those of Omani-owned Bulgarian Acquisition Company II S.a.r.L., which held 30 per cent in the bank. The lender was declared insolvent last week, starting on November 6 2014, when it lost its banking licence………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Global investors start $1.9 bln lawsuit against Norway

Posted on 28 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An Oslo court started to hear a $1.9 billion lawsuit by a group of international investors against Norway on Monday, in a case that challenges the country’s reputation as a predictable place to do business with little political risk.
Investors including Allianz, UBS, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and two Canadian pension funds are suing Norway over its decision to cut tariffs for using the Gassled pipeline network, arguing it was liable for the 15 billion crowns ($1.9 billion) in lost earnings they would suffer as a result through 2028………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway to clean up sovereign wealth fund

Posted on 28 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway would bar its state pension fund, the world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund, from investing in the worst climate-polluting companies. In its annual white book on managing the fund, the right-wing government proposed to “introduce a new criterion to exclude companies whose conduct to an unacceptable degree entail greenhouse gas emissions.”
The proposal did not mention any companies by name. The new rule is in line with experts’ recommendations in a December report, though its conclusions had left environmentalists and the political opposition disappointed. They had wanted to see the fund - which is valued at 835 billion euros ($885 billion), fuelled by Norway’s state oil revenues - divest all of its holdings in companies linked to fossil fuels………………………………………..Full Article: Source

What the BNY Mellon Forex Settlement Really Means for SWFs

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Regulators and law enforcement extracted a hefty fine for fraud at one of America’s most respected financial institutions. Have sovereign wealth funds learned their lesson?
To be sure, despite the size of the settlement, the numbers involved may not seem big by sovereign wealth standards. “One question here, is it material?” asks Patrick Schena, Adjunct Assistant Professor and Co-Head of the Fletcher Network for Sovereign Wealth and Global Capital at the Fletcher School of Tufts University outside Boston, who advises on custodial issues………………………………….Full Article: Source

KIC faces state auditor’s inspection

Posted on 22 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Korea Investment Corporation (KIC) is facing an inspection by the Board of Audit and Inspection over a planned investment in the Los Angeles Dodgers. The National Assembly Strategy and Finance Committee held a meeting, Tuesday, and approved a request for an audit of the KIC.
According to lawmakers, the country’s sovereign fund is planning to invest $400 million to gain a 19 percent stake in the Major League Baseball (MLB) team from Guggenheim Partners, its largest shareholder. However, there has been concern that it might result in huge losses because the team has been in deficit for some few years. Analysts also point out that the KIC won’t be participating on the board either even if it becomes a co-owner of the team according to the deal…………………………………..Full Article: Source

KIC breaks rules in bid to invest in LA Dodgers: lawmaker

Posted on 21 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

South Korea’s sovereign wealth fund has violated its own rules in its move to buy into the Los Angeles Dodgers, a lawmaker said Tuesday. The Korea Investment Corporation (KIC), which manages assets entrusted by South Korea’s central bank, has reportedly been in talks to buy a 19 percent stake in the baseball club from U.S.-based investment firm Guggenheim Partners, a deal estimated at 400 billion won (US$369 million).
Rep. Park Won-suk said KIC chief Ahn Hong-chul’s meeting with executives of Guggenheim Partners, an investment firm that owns the team, on Jan. 12 violated internal guidelines limiting the chairman’s role. The KIC rules stipulate that the chairman can only take part in the investment process at the very last moment when a committee is formed to make a final decision…………………………………..Full Article: Source

SWFs Selling Out

Posted on 20 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

On Tuesday the China Investment Corp. (CIC) disclosed that it had sold more than 375.6 million shares in Shanghai-based Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. (SMIC) in a series of transactions over the first three months of 2015, lowering its stake to 10.5 percent of SMIC’s shareholder capital.
CIC had subscribed to purchase some HK$161.1 million ($20.6 million) in the company’s Hong Kong-listed shares in August 2014. However, SMIC’s share price has risen since then — its shares listed on the New York Stock Exchange have gained nearly 41 percent over the past 12 months — and the fund appears to have moved to cash in on the excess return…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway oil fund to disclose voting

Posted on 16 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $US880 billion oil fund will this week usher in a new era in corporate governance when it begins to disclose in advance how it will vote at companies’ shareholder meetings, in a bid to become a more active investor.
As part of its initiative, the sovereign wealth fund, which is the world’s largest, will also reveal that it is backing shareholder resolutions at BP and Royal Dutch Shell to force the oil companies to reveal more about how they are tackling climate change. This year, the fund is aiming to give notice of its voting intentions at the annual meetings of up to 10 companies it backs, with the “clear ambition” to expand the practice to more of the 9,000 companies in which it holds stakes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway oil fund begins policy of revealing how it votes

Posted on 15 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $880bn oil fund will on Wednesday usher in a new era in corporate governance when it begins to disclose in advance how it will vote at companies’ shareholder meetings, in a bid to become a more active investor.
As part of its initiative, the sovereign wealth fund – which is the world’s largest – will also reveal that it is backing shareholder resolutions at BP and Royal Dutch Shell to force the oil companies to reveal more about how they are tackling climate change. This year, the fund is aiming to give notice of its voting intentions at the annual meetings of up to 10 companies it backs, with the “clear ambition” to expand the practice to more of the 9,000 companies in which it holds stakes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

NZSF Files Portuguese Legal Proceedings Regarding Oak Finance Investment

Posted on 14 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The New Zealand Superannuation Fund (NZSF) announced it has filed legal proceedings in Portuguese courts against the Bank of Portugal – the country’s central bank. The sovereign fund is trying to recover US$ 150 million. According to a press release, the proceedings “challenge the validity of a Bank of Portugal decision which purported to ‘clarify’ that the Oak Finance loan had not been transferred from Banco Espirito Santo to Novo Banco, with retroactive effect.”
In addition, the NZSF had issued proceedings with regard to the English debt recovery action launched in February against Novo Banco. Oak Finance investors are being represented in London by Akin Gump LLP and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Aviation Commission must report to Parliament, not PM, says PKR

Posted on 13 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The newly created Aviation Commission must report to Parliament for scrutiny and public safety, and not the prime minister who is already tainted by his links to debt-laden sovereign wealth fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), PKR said today.
Party vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar also said that a commission board which reports to the prime minister would only open up another “wormhole” of conflicting interests and could be abused. She said an independent commission was crucial given that previous appointments by the Prime Minister’s Office have proven to further centralise responsibility and escape accountability………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Accounts Chamber to inspect Oil Fund

Posted on 09 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Accounts Chamber has approved the plan of control measures for the nearest future. According to the Chamber, its Board has sanctioned inspections in a number of state organizations. The State Oil Fund (SOFAZ) will be inspected for budget execution, the State Committee for Standardization, Metrology and Patient – for budgetary and extra-budgetary funds.
The Chamber will also conduct inspections in the executive authorities of Agjabedi and Khachmaz regions, as well as in the Azerbaijan Agency for Reconstruction and Rehabilitation of Areas (water supply and sanitation projects)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Future Fund refuses to appear before Senate tax avoidance inquiry

Posted on 07 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The $100bn Future Fund has refused to give evidence to a Senate inquiry into corporate tax avoidance despite being named in leaked documents last year among scores of companies using secret Luxembourg deals to reduce tax by routing profits through tax havens.
The fund has declined to appear before the inquiry run by the Senate economics references committee, according to a committee spokesman. Executives from Google, Microsoft, Apple, News Corp Australia, Rio Tinto, Fortescue Metals, BHP Billiton and Glencore will all give evidence, along with corporate tax experts from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Ernst and Young and KPMG………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Social-security fund allowed to invest in local government bonds

Posted on 02 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s State Council, or cabinet, announced measures on Wednesday to boost returns at the nation’s social-security fund, expanding its investment scope to include local-government bonds and other financial instruments.
The new rules allow the fund to invest up to 20% of its portfolio in local-government debt and corporate bonds, according to a statement on the main government website. Previously, the fund was allowed to invest up to 10% of its portfolio in corporate debt, but not in local-government debt………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sack MAS, Khazanah bosses instead of staff, unions say

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Six worker unions demanded that top officials of Malaysia Airlines (MAS) and owner Khazanah Nasional be removed in place of the 6,000 workers that will be made redundant in the flag carrier’s restructuring.
According to local business paper The Edge Financial Daily, the unions led by Tan Sri Zainal Rampak and representing up to 13,000 MAS employees said “mismanagement” on the part of MAS and Khazanah as well as their “failure to turn around the airline on numerous occasions” were reason enough for the officials to go rather than workers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Twin ghosts haunt Malaysia’s sovereign fund

Posted on 13 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysia’s 1MDB faces a daunting task. The six year-old sovereign fund was set up to finance big national projects but expanded too fast, took on heavy debts and is now at the centre of a growing controversy. An ambitious restructuring brings both political and financial risks. The fund which counts Prime Minister Najib Razak as chairman of its board of advisors has pledged to dismantle itself following a strategic review led by new chief executive Arul Kanda.
It plans to stop making new investments and raise cash through an initial public offering of Malaysia’s second largest independent power producer. Selling unused land and finding equity partners for real estate projects that include a new financial centre in Kuala Lumpur and a development built around the terminus for a planned high-speed rail link with Singapore should bring in additional funds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kadir backs calls for forensic audit of 1MDB

Posted on 09 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Former NSTP chief editor A Kadir Jasin has backed deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s call for the Public Accounts Committee to investigate the financial affairs of the troubled 1Malaysia Development Bhd, saying a true forensic audit would reveal the true story behind the figures.
1Malaysia Bhd, a government-owned investment company, also described as a sovereign wealth fund, has accumulated debts of about RM42 billion and has been criticised for its opaque financial transactions. Kadir, writing in his blog, said a forensic audit into 1MDB since its inception was the correct approach………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Transparency International joins calls for probe of Malaysia fund 1MDB

Posted on 04 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Anti-graft watchdog Transparency International on Tuesday (Mar 3) joined mounting calls for Malaysia’s prime minister to launch an investigation into a sovereign wealth fund hit by reports of murky deals and missing millions. The state-backed fund, 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), has quickly emerged as a major liability for premier Najib Razak, who championed its launch in 2009 and chairs its board of advisors. 1MDB is widely reported to be struggling to pay off more than US$11 billion in debt, raising fears it could collapse and wreak havoc on Malaysia’s financial system.
Transparency International Malaysia called for a “full investigation into the numerous allegations of massive… financial and commercial crime” involving 1MDB, the anti-graft organisation said in a statement. It made specific mention of a report this past weekend alleging US$700 million were diverted from a shadowy 2009 deal between 1MDB and a little-known Saudi energy firm, PetroSaudi……………………………………….Full Article: Source

NZ Super Fund challenges European senior bank debt precedent

Posted on 02 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The New Zealand Superannuation Fund is concerned its loss of US$150 million in the collapse of Portugal’s Banco Espirito Santo has set a precedent endangering protections for holders of senior bank debt under Europe’s new bank resolution laws.
The sovereign wealth fund with NZ$28 billion under management launched legal action last week to recover funds it lent to BES in July last year through a vehicle called Oak Finance. The deal was arranged by Goldman Sachs and protected by credit default swap insurance………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Of Najib, 1MDB & the DISAPPEARANCE of Malaysia’s public funds

Posted on 02 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The statements given by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) chairman Tan Sri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin pertaining to the funding and the status of the 1MDB, and whether it involves public funds or not, are rather confusing for the people to grasp.
While Najib stated that, “I wish to stress here that 1MDB is a strategic investment fund owned by the Malaysian government and I will not allow anyone to use or misappropriate public funds for personal interest or gain,”… in the official 1MDB website Lodin wrote,”… whereas a sovereign wealth fund is directly funded by the government and invests on its behalf, 1MDB raises and invests its own capital………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PAC wants AG to audit 1MDB immediately

Posted on 27 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) wants the Auditor General’s Department to immediately carry out an audit of the government-owned 1MDB’s deals before it calls up the company.
PAC chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed said the immediate audit should be of the source of the RM2 billion used to settle 1MDB’s loans with local banks, the RM3 billion injection of government funds into the debt-laden company, its dealings with PetroSaudi International (PSI), and whether the money parked in Cayman Islands has been brought back………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Standard Chartered Overhaul Gets Temasek Stamp of Approval

Posted on 27 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Temasek Holdings Pte. Ltd., the Singapore state investment company, which is the biggest shareholder of Standard Chartered PLC, said Thursday it welcomed Bill Winters as the new chief executive of the emerging markets bank. Mr. Winters, a former co-chief executive of the investment bank at J.P. Morgan Chase, was named as the group chief executive of Standard Chartered, replacing Peter Sands.
Temasek, which owns around 18% in Standard Chartered but doesn’t have a board seat, has expressed frustration with the bank in the past. The state investment firm wasn’t involved in the hiring process at the lender, which is grappling with slowing economies in its core Asian markets that have taken a toll on results………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Super Fund confirms Portugal bank legal case

Posted on 27 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The New Zealand Superannuation Fund has confirmed this morning that it has filed debt recovery proceedings in the English courts against the Portugese bank Novo Banco. It added that Oak Finance investors “would also shortly be filing public law proceedings in Portugal against the Bank of Portugal, challenging the validity of the Bank’s decision purporting to retransfer the Oak Finance loan, with retroactive effect, from Novo Banco to Banco Espirito Santo.”
Its litigation against the Portuguese central bank, the Bank of Portugal, could end up before the European Court of Justice, said the fund’s chief executive, Adrian Orr………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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