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Sovereign Wealth Funds Briefing - Archive | February, 2014

Khazanah joins sovereign funds’ expansion spree

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When Khazanah Nasional Bhd. announced 2013 returns last month, the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund highlighted its international presence for the first time and plans to continue expanding abroad.
Khazanah, which has locations in Beijing and Mumbai, said in the annual report it opened offices in San Francisco and Istanbul, and included a map of the various countries where its companies have operations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Mubadala, Trafigura complete acquisition of 65pct of Porto Sudeste in Brazil

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodity trading company Trafigura Group and Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund have completed their acquisition of a controlling stake in a major Brazilian port from troubled Brazilian tycoon Eike Batista.
Trafigura and Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Development Co. will own a combined 65% of Porto Sudeste while MMX Mineracao e Metalicos SA, an iron-ore miner controlled by Mr. Batista, will retain the remaining 35%, the companies said in a statement. In exchange, Trafigura and Mubadala will take on 1.3 billion Brazilian reais ($553 million) in debts owed by one of MMX’s mining subsidiaries, and will also invest $400 million in the port, according to the statement………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth fund to Invest $10 mln in NMRC

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign Wealth Fund will invest $10 million in the Nigerian Mortgage Refinancing Company (NMRC) to improve its market position. As per Mr. Uche Orji, Chief Executive of Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, the current investment in NMRC has been planned as a core equity investor by SWF.
The Nigerian government provided additional funding of $550 million to SWF two weeks back. The current portfolio of Sovereign Wealth Fund is worth $1.55 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kazakhstan to create regional airline with Bombardier planes

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Kazakhstan will create a new airline to serve domestic routes and has entered a partnership agreement with Canada’s Bombardier Inc on delivery of its first 10 planes, the oil-rich country’s sovereign wealth fund said on Thursday.
President Nursultan Nazarbayev met Bombardier Chief Executive Officer Pierre Beaudoin on Wednesday and told him that the company would perform domestic flights and be called Air Kazakhstan. “We must register the new company by May, attract an operator, and we already know who it will be, and buy these planes and deliver them by the end of this year,” Umirzak Shukeyev, head of the Samruk-Kazyna state investment fund said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

80 Samruk-Kazyna companies may be privatized in 2014

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Around 80 companies that are part of Kazakhstan’s Samruk-Kazyna Sovereign Wealth Fund might be privatized in 2014, Tengrinews reports citing the Fund’s Chairman Umirzak Shukeyev.
“We have chosen around 80 companies that meet the criteria. The list includes 27 companies of KazMunaiGas (national oil and gas company), 34 companies of Kazakh Temir Zholy (national railway company), 11 companies of KazAtomProm (national nuclear company), 2 companies of Kazakhstelekom (national Internet and TV provider), 8 companies of Samruk-Energo (national manager of power assets) and 1 company of KEGOC (Kazakhstan Electricity Grid Operating Company),” Shukeyev said at the meeting of Sovereign Wealth Fund……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Alaska Permanent Fund looks to North Dakota

Posted on 28 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Alaska Permanent Fund is joining the rush to the Bakken, the new North Dakota shale oil play that has had Alaska leaders fearful and envious.
Anger at being surpassed by North Dakota in oil production was used by those challenging Alaska’s former ACES oil tax law in recent years, and it helped win passage of Senate Bill 21, an oil-tax rollback championed by the state’s oil industry and Gov. Sean Parnell………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kazakh state wealth fund sees subsidiaries borrowing $4.3 bln in 2014

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Kazakhstan’s sovereign wealth fund Samruk-Kazyna expects its subsidiaries to borrow 800 billion tenge ($4.3 billion) this year, around half of it on external markets, Nurlan Rakhmetov, the fund’s managing director, said on Wednesday.
Samruk-Kazyna manages state-run stakes worth a total of around $100 billion, or roughly half of Kazakhstan’s gross domestic product. The oil-rich nation of 17 million is central Asia’s largest economy………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway wealth fund ban proves no hurdle for Arctic coal mining

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

As lawmakers in Oslo debate whether to ban their $840 billion sovereign wealth fund from investing in coal companies, the country has opened a new coal mine in the Arctic Svalbard archipelago.
Mining for coal in the northernmost reaches of the globe helps Western Europe’s biggest oil producer keep a presence in the fossil-fuel rich region as nations, including Russia and the U.S., jockey for power there. Norway is fighting for a claim to the Arctic as its North Sea oil and gas reserves start to run out after more than 40 years of production………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway SWF coal withdrawal bad for environment and industry

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The majority of parliament believes that the country’s Sovereign Wealth Fund should no longer be used to invest in the coal industry. Pro-industry lobbyists disagree. “We want to divest [our holdings] in 100 per cent coal companies because it’s is the most polluting energy source we have,” Deputy Centre Party (Sp) leader Trygve Slagsvold Vedum told NRK, Wednesday.
Milton Catelin from the World Coal Association visited the Norwegian Parliament this week hoping to change MPs minds. He argues it will affect the coal industry’s research into climate change………………………………………..Full Article: Source

War of words over SNP’s plans for sovereign oil fund

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The future of North Sea oil and gas continued to dominate the independence battle as politicians clashed over plans for a wealth fund. Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael warned that an independent Scotland would have no hope of emulating Norway’s £500billion oil fund, claiming the SNP was trying to “fool” people into thinking it could do so.
The SNP responded, saying UK ministers were the ones trying to dupe Scots into thinking that the nation was the only place in the world where oil was a “burden and not a bonus”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth fund partners Julius Berger on 2nd Niger bridge

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) said it has signed an agreement with Julius Berger (JB) Nigeria Plc, under its Motorways investment, for the construction of the Second Niger Bridge. The project, which is projected to cost N117 billion, would be constructed with an additional 39-kilometre dual carriageway along the Onitsha-Enugu axis.
The Managing Director/Chief Executive of the NSIA, Mr Uche Orji, who disclosed this while briefing journalists in Abuja on the progress made so far with the fund, said it has invested the sum of $10 million out of the Sovereign Wealth Fund into the Nigerian Mortgage Refinancing Company (NMRC) which was launched by President Goodluck Jonathan last month………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Khazanah joins sovereign funds’ expansion spree: Southeast Asia

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund announced its 2013 return last month, it highlighted its international presence for the first time in its annual report and plans to continue expanding abroad. Khazanah Nasional Bhd., which has locations in Beijing and Mumbai, said it opened offices in San Francisco and Istanbul with a map that included the various countries where its companies have operations.
“The new offices indicate a further internationalization of their investments,” said Victoria Barbary, director at the London-based Institutional Investor’s Sovereign Wealth Center. “I expect Khazanah to seek more technology investment through its office in California. And that might help bolster some knowledge transfer to their domestic firms.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Global wealth funds buy ‘trophy’ hotel properties away from big brands

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Global sovereign wealth funds and high-net-worth individual investors are steadily acquiring big-ticket hotel “trophy” assets around the world, and experts say the trend is likely to continue. While Middle Eastern investors have had the strongest presence recently among such buyers, cash-laden investors are now emerging from China to Norway to Latin America.
Major players such as Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and Marriott International have sold multiple luxury properties to overseas buyers in recent months, particularly Middle Eastern individual investors and sovereign wealth………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds boost real assets in February

Posted on 27 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In recent times, sovereign wealth funds and public pensions have boosted exposure to real assets. According to research by the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, more large public investors will augment allocation to real assets while lowering allocations to domestic equity and fixed income.
For example, near the end of 2013, Australia’s Future Fund has planned to expand real asset allocation from just over 10% to barely under 20%. Embracing infrastructure, the sovereign fund’s chief investment officer, David Neal, was involved on them acquiring a stake in Perth airport……………………………………….Full Article: Source

LNG funds for PNG’s sovereign wealth fund: Treasuer Polye

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Papua New Guinea Treasury Minister Don Polye has stated that all proceeds from the sale of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) Project will go directly into the Sovereign Wealth Fund.
“I would like to assure the people of Papua New Guinea that all proceeds of LNG will go directly into the SWF and I mean 100% of it. The first sale of the LNG will begin this year and the projected growth of the economy will be roughly approximately valued around K52 billion (US$20 billion) when the first proceeds of the sales of LNG start coming in………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway sovereign fund too big for central bank, report says

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway may need to separate its sovereign wealth fund from the central bank as its ballooning size makes proper oversight more difficult, the annual Norges Bank Watch report said.
With a fund of 5 trillion kroner ($830 billion) that’s “invested in a complex set of assets, we are concerned that the board’s capacity may be strained,” Knut Anton Mork, chief economist at Svenska Handelsbanken AB, Xavier Freixas, a professor at Universitat Pompeu Fabra, and Kyrre Aamdal, senior economist at DNB ASA, wrote in the report………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norges Bank review calls on MPC to relinquish control of wealth fund

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A separate board should be appointed to supervise Norway’s state oil fund – the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, which is housed within the central bank and currently overseen by the monetary policy committee – according to an independent report funded partly by Norway’s finance ministry.
The proposal to split responsibility for the oil fund and monetary policy at Norges Bank comes two days after Petter Johnsen, the fund’s chief investment officer for equities, told the Financial Times that it was “recruiting actively” in a bid to “double the size” of its 90-strong equity team………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway SWF kicked the habit, lost money

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Some NOK 10bn of Norwegians’ oil-bred pension money went up in smoke after the Sovereign Wealth Fund pulled out of tobacco industry shares, reports say. The SWF, criticised for using tax havens, double standards, and nuclear weapons industry investments, performs a constant balancing act when it comes to moneymaking and ethics.
The NOK 9.6 billion dividends loss (roughly USD 1.59bn/EUR 1.16bn/GBP 956.54m at today’s ROE) concerns the August 2005-November 2011 period, according to Norges Bank’s calculations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway pipeline investors in new row with government over taxes

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investors including Allianz SE (ALV) and Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, already suing Norway’s government in a gas-tariff dispute, are petitioning for tax relief to cut costs of a natural gas terminal and pipeline.
They’re seeking to add projects for a terminal in Emden, Germany, and modifications to the Norpipe pipeline to those that were proposed to receive an exemption from a tax increase, according to a hearing letter from the Gassled owners. The projects are estimated to encompass investments of 5.9 billion kroner ($980 million)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azerbaijan creates company on Shah Deniz projects’ management and gas delivery to Europe

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree on Feb. 25 establishing a closed joint-stock company (CJSC) for effective management of projects within the second phase of Shah Deniz gas and condensate field’s development, expansion of the South Caucasus Pipeline, Trans-Anatolian Gas Pipeline (TANAP) and Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP).
State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) has been instructed to provide an equity financing for the CJSC, which is under direct state ownership. The funds to be provided to the CJSC for financing the equity will provide a long-term investment on return conditions. CJSC’s proceeds received from all projects will be transferred to SOFAZ, until all of funds invested in the joint stock company are repaid………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The hidden giant: Abu Dhabi’s oil IPIC is emerging stronger than ever

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The government of Abu Dhabi created IPIC to leverage the energy expertise embedded in the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, or ADIA, the largest sovereign wealth fund in the Middle East and Adnoc, with its network of joint ventures with the world’s leading energy supermajors.
Abu dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Co, or IPIC, one of the Gulf’s leading oil and gas multinational corporations, was founded by the late UAE President Shaikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan in 1984 to invest in energy upstream/downstream projects worldwide from exploration and production, pipelines refining, trading shipping, crude oil, natural gas………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth fund from Malaysia and Qatar eyes hospitality asset in India

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In one of the biggest deals in the Indian hospitality industry, sovereign wealth funds of Abu Dhabi, Qatar and Malaysia are vying with each other to acquire two of India’s marquee properties for about US$322 million, said a news report. All the three funds are big time investors in leisure and tourism assets. Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, the world’s third biggest sovereign fund with US$627 billion of assets, recently bought Australia’s largest owner of hotels, Tourism Asset Holdings.
Similarly, Qatar Investment Authority, which owns luxury department store Harrods, plans to expand the brand into hotels. And Khazanah Nasional owns themed resorts in Malaysia……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Singaporean fund manager Fullerton to set up London office

Posted on 26 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Temasek Holdings’ fund management arm, Fullerton, is to open an office in London to build up its business with European investors, Britain’s finance ministry said on Tuesday.
Fullerton Fund Management, which specialises in Asian and emerging markets and manages about S$12 billion in assets, cited Britain’s initiative, launched last year, to improve tax and regulatory competitiveness as a major draw………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman: SGRF adopts whistle-blowing policy

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

State General Reserve Fund (SGRF), the largest sovereign wealth fund of the government, has launched a ‘Whistle Blowing Policy’ aimed at encouraging the SGRF staff to report illegal practices and incidents that violate the rules of ethical behaviour at work and disclose any concerns directly related to SGRF and its operations.
The policy was launched on Sunday at the SGRF premises, during a two-day Risk and Compliance event organised with the aim of introducing the new policy to all the employees. The event was attended by H E Abdulsalam Mohammed al Murshidi, CEO, SGRF………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysia’s 1MDB may build 50-megawatt solar plant

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd. may build the nation’s biggest solar power plant ahead of an initial public offering, the Edge Financial Daily reported, citing industry sources it didn’t identify.
The project would help diversify 1MDB’s 3,951-megawatt power-generation portfolio, which it plans to list, according to the report. 1MDB didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail and phone call requesting comment………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB’s ‘fantastic’ investment strategy?

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1MDB said it had “invested the proceeds with regulated and licensed international fund managers. These fund managers adopt an absolute return strategy of which the primary investment objective is to achieve long-term capital appreciation and/or steady income through investments in listed and/or unlisted companies”.
“A total of US$200 million (RM658.9 million) has been remitted from the fund to the 1MDB group in Malaysia to service repayment. Out of this, US$134 million (RM430 million) is from the 5.76 percent cash dividend generated within the first year of the investment period.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

GMR Infra to give preferred shares to Temasek, IDFC consortium

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

GMR Group has offered a clutch of private equity investors a small stake in its flagship company to compensate for a delay in facilitating their exit in one of GMR’s units. The Bangalore-based infrastructure company said on Friday that Singapore’s state-owned investment firm Temasek Holdings Pte Ltd, and a consortium of investors led by Indian private equity (PE) firm IDFC Alternatives have agreed to restructure their investments in GMR Energy Ltd (GEL).
It said GMR Infrastructure Ltd, the flagship company of GMR Group, will give convertible preferred shares (CCPs) worth Rs.788.8 crore to Temasek and CCPs worth Rs.347.8 crore to the IDFC consortium………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Temasek playing with fire … again

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In the investment world, one must either be very dumb or very smart to make moves such as the one reportedly being contemplated by the Singapore sovereign fund Temasek Holdings Pte in Thailand.
Reports over the past week said that Temasek was looking to divest its shareholding in Shin Corp Plc (now called Intouch or INTUCH), and make a financial killing in the process. Temasek purchased nearly 96% of Shin in 2006 for 49.25 baht a share and is sitting on potential capital gains of billions of dollars as the current share price of INTUCH is around 70 baht………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s oil fund: The biggest fund manager you’ve never heard of

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Petter Johnsen is perhaps the biggest fund manager in equity markets you’ve never heard of. He controls about $530bn worth of shares, owning on average 1.25 per cent of every single listed company in the world.
The reason he is no Bill Gross or John Paulson in the recognition stakes is all down to his employer: Norges Bank Investment Management, the arm of Norway’s central bank that manages the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, with assets of close to $840bn………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway SWF to double equities team

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s Government Pension Fund-Global has revealed plans to double its equities investment team to almost 200 people. The $840 billion fund is already the world’s largest equities investor, and has told the Financial Times that it plans to increase its staffing capability to eke out better returns.
Petter Johnsen, CIO for equities at the fund, told the newspaper its current team of around 85 to 90 people needed to be double its current size so it was “recruiting actively”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Abuja to host regional summit on sovereign wealth funds

Posted on 25 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Africa Investor (AI), a leading international investment and communications group, has announced that Nigeria will host African pension and sovereign wealth funds at the Africa investor CEO Infrastructure Investment Summit, taking place in Abuja on May 6-7.
The Sovereign Wealth and Pension Fund Leaders Dialogue on Investing in Africa’s Infrastructure will be the first of its kind to engage Africa’s pension and sovereign wealth funds on investing in the continent’s wealth of bankable infrastructure investment opportunities………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Crisis puts sovereign funds under pressure to keep assets liquid

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Caught in an emerging market storm, some resource-rich states may keep more windfall income in liquid assets, ready to aid their economies, rather than locked up in strategic investment for future generations.
Kazakhstan’s move last week to dip into its National Fund to slash banks’ bad loans and - to some extent - Russia’s plan to tap into its wealth fund to bail out Ukraine reduce a potential pool of funds that otherwise could have been invested in capital-heavy projects such as infrastructure………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s oil fund to double specialists

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund is looking to more than double the number of industry specialists in its equities team as the $840bn Norwegian oil fund steps up efforts to outperform global stock markets. Norway’s oil fund is one of the world’s biggest equity investors, owning on average 1.25 per cent of every listed company globally.
Giving a rare insight into the inner workings of the oil fund, Petter Johnsen, its chief investment officer for equities, told the Financial Times he was looking to bulk up the number of portfolio managers that follow specific sectors such as US banks or European insurers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Alliance targets Norway’s Whitehaven investment

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A group of Australian NGOs is urging the Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund to divest from a controversial new mining project in northwest NSW. The Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund has an estimated $7 million invested in Whitehaven Coal, the company behind the Maules Creek Mine, Australia’s largest greenfield mining project which has been the target of a high profile opposition campaign by local farmers, traditional owners and environmentalists.
The fund controls over $910 billion, owning approximately 1 per cent of the world’s stocks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB should be more transparent in corporate reporting, says anti-graft body

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1Malaysia Development Bhd’s failure to file its audited accounts for the financial year ending March 2013 with the regulators raises questions over its commitment to transparency in corporate reporting, Transparency International Malaysia (TI-M) said today.
1Malaysia Development Bhd, or 1MDB, is a government sovereign wealth fund. The anti-graft watchdog said in a statement that corporate activities should be reported in a timely manner, and must show accountability, accuracy and completeness in its records………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Korea Investment Corporation–Re-imaging the state in the global sphere

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

At about $64 billion (2013), the sovereign wealth funds managed through the Korea Investment Corporation is among the smaller funds. As a member of the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds, the KIC shares certain characteristics with the larger SWFs, grounded on the GAAP of the Santiago Principles.
The KIC is also a relatively new fund. It was established in 2005 under the Korean Investment Corporation (KIC) Act No. 7393 (2005) as a non-commodity fund; or better put, as a government owned investment management company that specializes in overseas investment (Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, South Korea)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Temasek, IDFC Alternatives among others to swap investment worth $183mln in GMR Energy

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund Temasek, IDFC Alternatives among other private investors in GMR Energy are swapping bulk of their investment in the firm with a stake in the listed parent GMR Infrastructure, as per a stock market disclosure.
This comes at a time when GMR Energy is looking to float an IPO. However, the primary market in the country is not conducive for fresh issues, partly due to outflows from emerging markets. These investors had put in Rs 1,395 crore in GMR Energy through Compulsorily Convertible Preference Shares (CCPS) in 2010………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Mozambique: No sovereign wealth fund yet - Finance minister

Posted on 24 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Mozambican government does not, at least in the short term, intend to use money from natural resources to set up a sovereign wealth fund, Finance Minister Manuel Chang said.
Asked by the independent television station STV what the government would do with the latest capital gains tax paid on the sale of assets in the Rovuma Basin, off the coast of the northern province of Cabo Delgado, where enormous natural gas deposits have been discovered. Chang said the first priority was to clear the Value Added Tax (VAT) rebates which the government owes companies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB must explain Cayman Islands fund

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

National sovereign wealth fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB)’s failure to file its audited accounts for the financial year ending March 2013 with regulators has raised questions over its transparency. Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua said this is even so when coupled with 1MDB’s decision to replace KPMG - its auditors since its inception - with rival firm Delloite.
Pua said the change of auditors “rings the loudest alarm” as there are many unanswered questions over 1MDB’s US$2.32 billion fund in the Cayman Islands………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB replaces auditors, gets time extension to submit accounts

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Government-backed 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) has confirmed that it has changed its auditors and that it has gotten a six-month extension from the authorities to file its accounts for the financial year ended March 31, 2013 (FY13).
1MDB stated that it had been granted an extension of time up to March 31, 2014 from the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) to file its annual returns. The spokesperson also confirmed reports that accounting firm KPMG had been replaced with Deloitte to complete the audit for FY13………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysia: Oil wealth must be controlled by Parliament

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

An opposition MP has proposed setting up a sovereign wealth fund to prevent the government in power from abusing Malaysia’s oil riches as a personal piggy bank.
Compared to oil-rich Norway which today has the richest sovereign wealth fund in the world at RM2.7 trillion, PKR MP Nurul Izzah Anwar lamented the fact that Malaysia’s equivalent oil fund, the Petronas-backed Kumpulan Wang Amanah Negara (Kwan), only has RM5.43 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Like Norway, create Malaysian millionaires with special oil fund, MP suggests

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A federal lawmaker urged Putrajaya today to set up a special oil fund for Malaysians like Norway’s pension fund, which recently ballooned to USD828.66 billion (RM2.7 trillion) and turned every Norwegian into theoretical millionaires.
PKR’s Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar said most of the revenue from Malaysia’s national oil company Petronas should not continue to be spent, but be set aside for rainy days in the future like Norway’s oil fund. “Petronas cannot continue to be the prime minister’s and his Cabinet’s personal bank, with almost 40 per cent of the revenue from petroleum being used in the country’s budget,” she said……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Blackstone, GIC invest in Kronos

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A team of Blackstone Group and GIC Private Ltd. reached a deal to take a minority stake in Kronos Inc. that values the human-resources software company at around $4.5 billion, including debt, said people close to the negotiations.
Blackstone, the world’s largest private-equity firm, and GIC, a sovereign-wealth fund owned by the Singapore government, are together investing about $750 million in Kronos, the people said. That will give the pair a roughly 44% stake in Kronos, one of the people said. The deal values Kronos equity at about $1.7 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Abu Dhabi Investment Authority in New York court defeat

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (Adia) has suffered another setback in its legal battle over its investment in Citigroup. An appeals court in New York on Wednesday dismissed Adia’s attempt to nullify an arbitration award in Citigroup’s favour from October 2011.
Adia had appealed the court’s decision in March not to dismiss the arbitration award. The court’s summary order said that Adia had failed to meet the “high hurdle” of showing that the arbitration panel either exceeded their powers or had showed a “manifest disregard for the law” in ruling in Citigroup’s favour in the arbitration proceedings………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kuwaiti MP proposes trust fund for citizens from birth

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A Kuwaiti MP filed a bill Thursday to create a government-funded trust fund for every citizen from birth that would become an 18th birthday present of around $40,000 (29,200 euros). Under MP Askar al-Enezi’s proposal, the government of the oil-rich Gulf state would deposit 50 dinars ($177) each month into an account for each citizen from the time of birth.
The money would be managed by the country’s sovereign wealth fund, Kuwait Investment Authority, and the capital and profits handed to citizens when they become adults………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Private equity and SWF investments rising in MENA

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Private equity and sovereign wealth fund (SWF) investments in the MENA region are strongly rebounding aided by the improved confidence in the regional economy, according to a report by Ernst & Young (EY).
Out of 442 deals announced in the MENA region during 2013, SWFs were involved in 19 deals with a deal value of $14.5 billion. This makes SWFs the single largest buyer constituency in MENA, contributing to 29 per cent of overall deal values………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil prices push sovereign wealth funds toward alternative investments

Posted on 21 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A number of sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) dependent on oil have been facing up to the twin threats of declining traditional asset values and flatlining oil prices, leading many of them to realize that the time to consider alternative investments might be here.
While oil was at its peak in 2009 at $140 per barrel, the flow of funds into oil-based SWFs grew significantly. During the past few years, however, this flow has been halted, as oil prices hover around $100 a barrel, proving irksome to SWFs of countries, states and provinces reliant on the commodity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How the Saudi Arabian dream could lift solar stocks

Posted on 20 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

When Saudi Arabia runs out of oil, what will sustain the nation of 28 million? That is the question that the nation’s leaders have thought long and hard about. One solution is putting surplus petrodollars into a sovereign wealth fund, which would invest that surplus in good times and provide steady interest income when the oil runs out.
Saudi Arabia has done just that, and now has the second largest sovereign wealth fund in the world with assets of $675.9 billion. At its present size, however, assuming an 8% annual return, which would yield interest income of $54 billion, the sovereign wealth fund would not be able to compensate for Saudi Arabia’s current oil income of around $300 billion a year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Court upholds Citigroup arbitration win over Abu Dhabi fund

Posted on 20 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A U.S. appeals court on Wednesday rejected the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority’s effort to void Citigroup Inc’s arbitration win in a dispute over a $7.5 billion investment in the bank less than a year before the 2008 financial crisis.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York said the sovereign wealth fund did not meet the “high hurdle” of showing that an American Arbitration Association panel demonstrated a “manifest disregard of the law” or exceeded its powers in ruling for Citigroup………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC head explains the ’smart way’ to comply

Posted on 20 February 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Keeping up with increasing compliance is of great concern to companies, and Singapore’s top sovereign wealth fund GIC Pte Ltd (formerly known as Government of Singapore Investment Corporation) is facing a similar challenge. But companies have to be careful not to let onerous rules hold them back, GIC group president Lim Siong Guan said at a plenary discussion yesterday.
“Compliance is a big challenge, the way I see GIC as a fund manager. And obviously, compliance is about making sure you follow the rules - and more so for GIC because it is the fund manager of the government and all our investments are in the name of the Singapore government, which means that there are other factors that we have to take into consideration, like reputational risks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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