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Dr Mahathir still believes 1MDB funds went to Najib’s accounts, says report

Posted on 27 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Dr Mahathir Mohamad has suggested that the US$700 million (S$980.1 million) deposited in Prime Minister Najib Razak’s personal account in 2013 is linked to the state-owned investment firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).
Speaking to the Financial Times (FT), the former prime minister said he does not believe the official stand by Mr Najib, and which was confirmed by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, that the deposit was a donation from a benefactor in the Middle-East. “I don’t believe it is a donation. I don’t believe anybody would give that much, whether an Arab, or anybody,” Dr Mahathir was quoted as saying by FT………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Najib’s defence of 1MDB, unspinned

Posted on 26 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

As more countries launch investigations into alleged fraudulent and money-laundering activities involving 1MDB, and as more illegal assets are frozen, which investors in their right minds would want to have anything to do with 1MDB? PM Najib Razak is trying to mislead poorly-informed Malaysians and portray himself as a ‘saviour’ when the exact opposite is true. Qatar has not put a cent into 1MDB yet.
Any Qatari investment or loan would most likely be used to settle 1MDB debts, just as the US$1 billion ‘investment’ from IPIC (International Petroleum Investment Company) in June 2015 to settle debts but with an expected transfer of assets from 1MDB to IPIC by June 2016 together with cash repayment (with interest) on an outstanding US$3.5 billion debt………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Swiss Look Into Connection Between Banking Sector and 1MDB

Posted on 24 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Swiss authorities have opened a criminal probe into the relationship between “suspicious transactions” in the country’s banking sector and a troubled state investment fund tied to Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak.
A spokesman for Switzerland’s Office of the Attorney General said a pair of transactions reported to the Swiss Money Laundering Reporting Office, or MROS, triggered the investigation, which is focused on the 1Malaysia Development Bhd. fund, or 1MDB. The 1MDB advisory board is headed by Mr. Najib………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Korean Sovereign Fund Asks Elliott to Stop Investing in Korea

Posted on 19 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

South Korea’s sovereign wealth fund has asked Elliott Management Corp. to refrain from investing in Korean-based businesses after the activist hedge fund firm lost a high-profile proxy fight last month aimed at blocking a merger of businesses partly owned by the Samsung conglomerate’s controlling Lee family, said a person with direct knowledge of the matter.
The request was made in accordance with the Korean law that allows Korea Investment Corp. to invest in non-Korean businesses only, the person said. The 2005 law, the Korea Investment Corporation Act, mandated creation of the sovereign fund to invest in overseas assets. The fund’s assets now are worth more than $85 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

BNY Mellon paying $14.8M to settle SEC charges on Middle Eastern sovereign wealth fund

Posted on 19 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Bank of New York Mellon Corp. agreed to pay $14.8 million to settle charges that it violated foreign-bribery laws by giving internships to relatives of officials from a Middle Eastern sovereign-wealth fund. The settlement is the first enforcement action brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission against a financial institution under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bans U.S. companies from giving anything of value to a foreign official to gain an unfair advantage or business favors.
One of the sovereign-wealth fund officials in 2010 told a BNY Mellon employee that he could “secure internships for his family members from a competitor of BNY Mellon if it did not satisfy his personal request,” according to court documents, and later became “angry” when the internships were delayed. The SEC didn’t name the fund or the country it represents………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Someone didn’t read Santiago Principle No. 14…

Posted on 19 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

That would be the Santiago Principles signed up to by sovereign wealth funds in 2008, regarding good governance — including via-a-vis the custodians of SWFs’ often-plentiful assets. While it was BNY Mellon who paid nearly $15m on Tuesday to settle SEC charges that it handed out internships to the family of a SWF client’s official, in order to retain the fund’s business…
In February 2010, at the conclusion of a business meeting, Official X made a personal and discreet request that BNY Mellon provide internships to two of his relatives: his son, Intern A, and nephew, Intern B…In June 2010, an employee of BNY Mellon with primary responsibility for the Asset Management relationship with the Middle Eastern Sovereign Wealth Fund wrote of the internships for Interns A and B: “I want more money for this. I expect more for this. . . . We’re doing [Official X] a favor…”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Malaysia’s sovereign fund scandal: 1 Messy Debt Business

Posted on 17 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak is fighting for political survival after being dragged into the centre of a scandal surrounding state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Here’s a breakdown of what is at stake for the southeast Asian country.
companies linked to quasi-sovereign fund 1MDB, according to documents from a government investigation published by the Wall Street Journal but not verified by Reuters. The revelations have triggered a political crisis and added to concerns about Malaysia’s already-fragile economy. It is the latest twist in a saga involving local tycoons, the investment bank Goldman Sachs, and state-backed companies from the Gulf. These had already made 1MDB a target for Najib’s political opponents………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Korea fund managers demand clarity on tax reforms

Posted on 06 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Korean fund managers have called for greater clarity over tax exemptions for funds that invest abroad. Tax disincentives have generally been cited by foreign fund managers in Korea as one of the biggest hurdles of developing funds which invest overseas, given that Korean investors are subject to a withholding tax of 14.5% on foreign funds.
Other important announcements by the government in June included further deregulation of Korea Investment Corporation (KIC) with the aim of supporting the management of small trust accounts as well as encouraging small and medium-sized pension funds to open trust accounts with KIC. he $85 billion sovereign wealth fund will also be allowed to jointly invest in overseas M&As with domestic corporations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chief of Woori sale committee prefers Middle East sovereign fund

Posted on 04 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The head of the Public Fund Oversight Committee (PFOC) said he hopes a sovereign fund from the Middle East will buy a stake in Woori Bank for a long-term investment. Park Sang-yong, a Yonsei University professor leading the eight-member government committee, said the committee is willing to sell part of the government’s 48.07 percent stake in Woori to a sovereign fund from the region.
The PFOC is a deliberative body of the Financial Services Commission in charge of privatizing Woori. “As we push for selling our Woori Bank stake to multiple buyers, we thought it would be great to have a Middle East sovereign fund because they are long-term investors that can support the management of the bank,” Park told The Korea Times………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PNG Sovereign Wealth Fund now law

Posted on 03 August 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Papua New Guinea Government has passed the Sovereign Wealth Fund bill after hold ups earlier in the week. The bill aims to ensure a portion of the earnings from the resource projects are saved for future generations with a percentage going into a stabilisation fund, as a cushion against fluctuating world commodity prices.
On Wednesday the Speaker, Theo Zurenuoc, refused to let one MP, John Hickey, vote on the measure because he has been referred to a leadership tribunal. The Government failed to muster the necessary two thirds of MPs to vote the bill through, but on Thursday it easily got the numbers, with just four MPs voting against it………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PNG passes Sovereign Wealth Fund Bill

Posted on 31 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

After a number of stalled attempts Papua New Guinea’s parliament has finally passed a law to establish a Sovereign Wealth Fund. The long-stated aim of the Fund is to manage the revenue generated by liquified natural gas and other resource projects and put it towards economic and social development.
Reporter Wesley Manuai says the legislation shows the fund will be split into two parts, a stabilisation fund and a savings fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PNG sovereign fund bill held up by confusion over suspension

Posted on 31 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Papua New Guinea government has failed to pass its major agenda, the Sovereign Wealth Fund bill due to differences in legal opinion between the parliament speaker and government coalition partner, the National Alliance Party.Yesterday’s parliament sitting was marked by confusion over whether one of the National Alliance MPs who has been referred to a leadership tribunal is currently suspended as an MP.
Going on legal advice from his office, the speaker Theo Zurenuoc refused to recognise Bogia MP John Hickey and his right to participate in the vote on the Fund. Pending clarification of his status, Mr Hickey left the chamber, and the government narrowly failed to pass the bill………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Fifth of Libya’s wealth fund untraced since Gaddafi

Posted on 30 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An estimated 20 percent of Libya’s $67bn-plus sovereign wealth fund, the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), has yet to be fully traced since the death of Colonel Gaddafi. The LIA appointed Deloitte in 2012 to conduct an audit of all of its assets – many of which are tied up in investments outside the country.
The auditor’s report was sent to the LIA in 2013 but has never been made public. The only detail the LIA released was the fund’s total value, estimated by Deloitte to be around $67 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya in legal action on nationalisations

Posted on 28 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Libyan Investment Authority has launched legal action against four African states alleging that they took advantage of Libya’s political turmoil to nationalise assets belonging to the $67bn sovereign wealth fund. Hassan Bouhadi, the LIA’s chairman who was appointed by the internationally recognised Tobruk government in October, said the legal action related to technology assets in Rwanda, Zambia, Chad and Niger.
“There are some individuals every day that are trying to apply false claims against the assets of the LIA and we have a few incidents where some countries have nationalised some of our assets,” Mr Bouhadi alleged………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kuwaiti MPs head to UK to check on SWF’s London office

Posted on 27 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Kuwaiti lawmakers scrutinising the country’s sovereign wealth fund departed to Britain on Friday to check the activities of its London bureau, Kuwait’s parliament said in a statement on the state news agency.
The MPs travelled to London to “investigate happenings” at the fund’s London office and will stay there till August, the National Assembly was quoted as saying. The fund, which has usually operated in great secrecy, did not respond to a request for comment on Friday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB is a debt not wealth fund

Posted on 27 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysia’s sovereign wealth creation vehicle, 1MDB, is today surviving on a lease extended by the sufferings of the wage earners. It is tax money, fuel price hikes and savings from institutions that seem to head to save 1MDB with urgently needed breathing space on time.
And lest we forget, international outfits that are prided by acclaimed institutions, as in the likes of the Goldman Sachs are embroilled in what is turning out to be the heist of the century politically-ringed money trail cutting into several destinations around the world………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PAC summons Jho Low over 1MDB scandal

Posted on 24 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Public Accounts Committee has summoned business tycoon Low Taek Jho to appear before them on Sept 8 to testify on the 1MDB scandal. PAC chief Nur Jazlan Mohamad said the committee has sent the summons letter to the Finance Ministry.
“They should know his whereabouts or be able to trace him [...]. It can get the police to locate him,” he said. He added how the MOF intends to trace Low is “not the PAC’s problem”. The businessman popularly known as Jho Low is also wanted by the special task force probing 1MDB………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman fund set to seek ruling against Bulgaria over bank collapse-source

Posted on 24 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s biggest sovereign wealth fund is set to seek an arbitration ruling against Bulgaria over the collapse of Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank). Oman’s State General Reserve Fund ( SGRF ) owned a 30 percent stake in Corpbank, Bulgaria’s fourth-largest lender, which collapsed last year following a bank run.
The market value of Oman’s stake stood at about 170 million levs ($95 million) last June, before the central took control of Corpbank, triggering the Balkan country’s worst financial crisis since the 1990s. SGRF’s claim would be based on the bank’s book value, which would likely be significantly different from its market value, though the source did not disclose the value of the claim………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman fund set to seek ruling against Bulgaria over bank collapse

Posted on 23 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s biggest sovereign wealth fund is set to seek an arbitration ruling against Bulgaria over the collapse of Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank), a source familiar with the situation told Reuters on Wednesday.
Oman’s State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) owned a 30 percent stake in Corpbank, Bulgaria’s fourth-largest lender, which collapsed last year following a bank run. The market value of Oman’s stake stood at about 170 million levs ($95 million) last June, before the central took control of Corpbank, triggering the Balkan country’s worst financial crisis since the 1990s………………………………………..Full Article: Source

CICC focus on $7.8b as it files for listing

Posted on 23 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China International Capital Corp, the mainland’s first investment bank, has filed for an initial public offering in Hong Kong that could be worth up to HK$7.8 billion.
CIC owns a 43.35 percent stake in CICC. Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC owns 16.35 percent, while private equity firms TPG Capital Management LP and KKR & Co hold 10.3 percent and 10 percent respectively………………………………………..Full Article: Source

PM Najib feels the heat as 1MDB melts down

Posted on 23 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In the spring of 2013, Song Dal Sun, head of securities investment at Seoul-based Hanwha Life Insurance, sat down to a presentation by a Goldman Sachs banker. The young Goldman salesman, who had flown in from Hong Kong, made a pitch for bonds to be issued by 1MDB, a state-owned company closely tied to Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.
It was enticing. The 10-year, dollar-denominated bonds offered an interest rate of 4.4 percent, about 100 basis points higher than other A-minus-rated bonds were yielding at the time, he recalls. But Song, a veteran of 25 years in finance, sensed something was amiss………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Austerity for Kazakhstan as Nazarbayev Cuts Access to Oil Fund

Posted on 22 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In July President Nursultan Nazarbayev stated that the Kazakh economy will no longer be supported by the money from the oil reserve fund, instructing his cabinet to search for this revenue elsewhere. Many in Kazakhstan are worried that the economy will severely contract without extra support from this fund to cover budget deficits.
“In these difficult times we can’t use the money from the State Oil Fund here and there, we don’t have such funds anymore. We will not allow this money used to subsidize the economy anymore. The government has to look elsewhere and find new and effective resources, and find ways to use that money effectively. And the people have to see the results of this work. And we will have to slow down our economy growth,” Nazarbayev said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Singapore freezes bank accounts linked to Malaysian 1MDB probe

Posted on 22 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore police have frozen two bank accounts as part of an investigation linked to Malaysian sovereign wealth fund 1MDB, Reuters reported Wednesday. The fund is being probed by authorities in Malaysia for financial mismanagement and graft.
“On 15 July 2015, we issued orders under the Criminal Procedure Code to prohibit any dealings in respect of money in two bank accounts that are relevant to the investigation,” Singapore police said in a statement Wednesday. It did not identify the bank or the accounts in question, because the investigation is continuing………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya: Freeze Libyan sovereign fund till unification, Breish

Posted on 20 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Abdul Magid Breish, once the undisputed leader of the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), has warned that the country’s $67 billion sovereign wealth fund should continue to be frozen “until we have total stability.”
Four chairmen are claiming to be representing LIA for the past two years but Breish stressed that the two rival governments and armed factions in Libya are in need of money and handing over money to them will be “too dangerous.” Both the Tobruk and Tripoli governments appointed different heads of various institutions, including the state oil company amid intensified hostilities………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth fund “Samruk-Kazyna” says agency Standard & Poor’s affirmed credit ratings of company at level “BBB/А-2″; outlook “Stable”

Posted on 16 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth fund “Samruk-Kazyna” JSC, whose bonds are officially listed on Kazakhstan Stock Exchange (KASE), has by an official letter informed KASE of the following: … on July 10, 2015 rating agency Standard&Poor’s affirmed the long-term and short-term credit ratings of the Fund on liabilities in foreign and local currencies at level “ВВВ/А-2″. Outlook – “Negative”. Also, Standard&Poor’s affirmed the Fund’s rating on national scale – “kzAA+”
The said letter and report of Standard & Poor’s of July 10, 2015, provided by Sovereign wealth fund “Samruk-Kazyna” JSC, are available on KASE website……………………………………….Full Article: Source

1MDB looms large over politics as fund is wound down

Posted on 15 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Long after its demise, Malaysia’s state investment company may loom large over the country’s politics and the future of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak. The brainchild of Najib, debt-ridden 1Malaysia Development Bhd’s six-year existence has been dogged by controversy, culminating in a decision to wind it down even before multiple investigations were started into its finances.
With Najib now fending off a Wall Street Journal report that US$700 million connected to 1MDB may have wended its way into his bank accounts, the fund risks having an outsized effect on affairs in Malaysia through to the next election due by 2018………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Minister of Finance: Oil Fund will reduce its transfers to Azerbaijan budget in 2016

Posted on 15 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) will continue to reduce its transfers to the state budget. According to Samir Sharifov, Azerbaijan’s Minister of Finance, the draft state budget for 2016 and next three years is already under preparation.
“Currently we analyze domestic and foreign macroeconomic situation, priorities and targets of the social and economic development. At the same time, when drafting budget documents we try to reduce SOFAZ transfers in order to preserve the Fund’s assets at the maximum level,” Sharifov said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Taiwan: Central bank strongly objects to SWF

Posted on 14 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The central bank voiced objections to a proposal to turn foreign exchange reserves into a sovereign wealth fund (SWF) aimed at stimulating the nation’s economy. Academics have advised Premier Mao Chi-kuo to establish an SWF using foreign exchange reserves to generate higher returns that would benefit the economy as a whole.
“If an SWF is necessary, the government should first seek to pass a law for its establishment, management and oversight so it can operate legally,” the central bank said in a statement. The government is seeking a remedy for the softening economy after exports plunged by 13.9 percent last month………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Temasek gets nod to become bigger contributor to Government’s income

Posted on 14 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The amendment to the Constitution will allow the Government to include Temasek Holdings as a contributor to the Net Investment Returns framework. A constitutional change to make Temasek Holdings a bigger contributor to the Singapore Government’s income was passed on Monday (Jul 13).
The Constitution of the Republic of Singapore (Amendment) Bill will allow the Government to include Temasek as a contributor to the Net Investment Returns (NIR) framework as Singapore seeks to make investments in healthcare, human capital and transport infrastructure in the coming years………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysia Investigates Leaks Claiming to Show Transfers to Najib Razak

Posted on 14 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Malaysian police said on Monday that they were opening an investigation into whether government officials, including central bank personnel, were the source of leaked documents purporting to show the transfer of hundreds of millions of dollars into the bank accounts of Prime Minister Najib Razak and his wife.
Najib, who was already unpopular for imposing a nationwide sales tax in April to pay for large budget shortfalls, has been embroiled in a scandal over billions of dollars that his critics say are missing from a sovereign wealth fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad, also known as 1MDB………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kuwait committee to visit London for sovereign fund probe

Posted on 14 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Lawmakers scrutinising Kuwait’s sovereign wealth fund will soon travel to Britain to check on the activities of its London arm, the head of the Kuwaiti parliament’s financial committee said. Like other sovereign funds in the Gulf, the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) has come under greater public scrutiny following last year’s plunge of oil prices, which has put state finances in the region under pressure.
“The first trip will happen after Eid,” Faisal Shaya said by telephone, referring to the Muslim celebration of Eid al-Fitr which is expected to occur this Friday. Shaya declined to elaborate on progress in the investigation into potential cases of wrongdoing at KIA, such as selling property at the wrong price or making bad investments………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Low tax and high fees consume Future Fund

Posted on 13 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When leaked documents describing the tax avoidance arrangements of 340 companies were published in November last year, one of the most surprising names to appear among the papers was the Future Fund, Australia’s sovereign wealth fund. Roughly 28,000 pages of documents were dissected by newspapers across the globe, which laid out special tax deals granted by the Luxembourg tax authorities to some of the world’s largest corporations.
Those accused of conducting tax avoidance on an industrial scale, and whose names were hauled through the press, included Pepsi, Ikea, Burberry, Procter & Gamble, Heinz, JPMorgan and FedEx………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SGRF working to retrieve investment in Corpbank

Posted on 13 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) has said that it is seriously working to protect its investment in Bulgaria’s bankrupt Corporate Commercial Bank (CCB). Last week, there were media reports that Oman, represented by SGRF, had initiated a lawsuit against the Bulgarian government following the bankruptcy of CCB, based on information from an unnamed source.
SGRF, in a statement on its website, said that it cannot comment on information from anonymous sources. “However, it is seriously working to protect its investment in CCB and observing all CCB related updates.” Bulgarian lender CCB was shut down last year by Bulgaria’s central bank after a bank run in June 2014. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Malaysian Financier Tied to Inquiry Into 1MDB

Posted on 10 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysian authorities have received information about the accounts of a young Malaysian financier as part of a probe into allegations of misallocation of money from a controversial state investment fund overseen by Prime Minister Najib Razak, according to documents related to the probe.
More than $500 million in accounts belonging to Jho Low, a Malaysian financier in his early 30s who helped set up 1Malaysia Development Bhd., or 1MDB, were the subject of correspondence in March between Singapore’s police and Malaysia’s central bank, which had asked Singapore for help investigating the fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysia police raids office of state fund 1MDB

Posted on 10 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The 1Malaysia Development Board (1MDB) will give its full cooperation to the officers of the special task force that “visited” its office in Jalan Sultan Ismail on Wednesday. The pm resulted to contain an everyday kitchen cabinet keeping up with on Wednesday, the earliest considering that the WSJ report caused public emergency which has considered to be an autumn…
Sources told The Star that a team from Commercial Crime Investigations Department (CCID) was involved in the raid. The press was barred from entering the building and no video footage was allowed of the premises………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman SWF takes legal action against Bulgaria over bank collapse

Posted on 10 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s biggest sovereign wealth fund has started legal action against the Bulgarian government over the collapse of Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank), a source at the fund told Reuters on Wednesday.
Oman’s State General Reserve Fund owned a 30 per cent stake in the Balkan country’s fourth-biggest lender, which was felled by a bank run and shut down by the central bank, triggering the country’s worst financial crisis since the 1990s………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investigators raid Malaysia fund after misappropriation claims

Posted on 09 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysian investigators have raided the offices of the state investment fund at the heart of an alleged misappropriation scandal that has left the prime minister battling to stay in power. Police vehicles swooped on 1 Malaysia Development Berhad’s offices in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday, five days after claims surfaced that almost $700m linked to the fund was paid to a bank account in the name of Najib Razak, the country’s premier.
Najib has denied taking money for personal gain in a case that has fed political turmoil in Southeast Asia’s third-largest economy and threatened the ruling United Malays National Organisation’s near six-decade grip on power………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak Threatens Legal Action Against The Wall Street Journal

Posted on 09 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Attorneys representing Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak threatened to take legal action against the Wall Street Journal over allegations of corruption, and claimed that the report was part of a plot against him.
Najib has been accused of siphoning off $700 million from a state-controlled investment fund into his personal funds, as revealed in a Wall Street Journal report on Friday. Najib has denied the allegations, calling them “vile” and “malicious” and threatened to sue the publication………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman SWF takes legal action against Bulgaria over bank collapse

Posted on 09 July 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s biggest sovereign wealth fund has started legal action against the Bulgarian government over the collapse of Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank), a source at the fund told Reuters on Wednesday. Oman’s State General Reserve Fund owned a 30 percent stake in the Balkan country’s fourth-biggest lender, which was felled by a bank run and shut down by the central bank, triggering the country’s worst financial crisis since the 1990s.
News of the legal action came as a Bulgarian parliament commission on Wednesday accused the main shareholder of running Corpbank as a pyramid scheme under the lax supervision of the central bank and the intelligence service………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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

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