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China Investment Corporation Narrows in on BC Timberlands

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The China Investment Corporation (CIC) is drawing closer to buying a significant stake in Island Timberlands LP. Brookfield Asset Management is the parent company of Island Timberlands. Island Timberlands controls around 258,000 hectares of timberland on Vancouver Island and the surrounding area. Island Timberlands harvests around 1.8 million cubic meters per annum, majority being exported to the Pacific Northwest USA and Asia.

Asia has robust demand for Douglas-fir and whitewood species. This demand has led Chinese firms to invest in the forestry sector in Western Canada. For example, in April 2011, ROC Holdings Ltd., a private Canadian company owned by a parent Chinese firm, purchased West Fraser Timber’s Skeena Sawmills division.

High quality real assets are in demand by sovereign wealth funds and large public funds.

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Allianz Joins UK Student Housing Platform

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Since 2010, a rush of foreign capital has been plowed into the U.K. student housing market. On June 22, 2018, Greystar Real Estate Partners, LLC and Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) sold an interest in their joint venture called Chapter to Allianz. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Turkish President Erdogan Wins Re-Election

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan won re-election, collecting 53% of the votes, while his closest rival Muharrem Ince generated a vote count of 31% – this is with 99% of the votes counted, according to Turkish state media Anadolu.

Erdogan gave a victory speech in Ankara, commenting, “The winner of this election is each and every individual among my 81 million citizens.”

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Will Sovereign Funds Capture Opportunity in Trump’s Space Force?

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U.S. President Donald Trump is keen on making a mark in the defense industry by launching a Space Force (joining – Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard) – attempting to ensure American dominance in space. Morgan Stanley eyes a potential windfall, seeing a US$ 1 trillion economy brewing. Morgan Stanley released a note to clients commenting that a Space Force, “could address critical vulnerabilities in national security, raising investor awareness in the formation of what we see as the next trillion-dollar economy.”

Sovereign wealth funds and other asset owners are major financial backers of semiconductors, defense, and companies focused on satellites and rockets. According to SWFI data, since 2014, there has been an increase in direct sovereign wealth fund investment in the aerospace and defense industry. In 2017, sovereign funds directly invested US$ 4.76 billion in aerospace and defense.

On June 18th, President Trump said, “Very importantly, I’m here by directing the Department of Defense and Pentagon to immediately begin the process necessary to establish a space force as the sixth branch of the armed forces. That’s a big statement.”

Sovereign Wealth Investment

From a sovereign wealth fund perspective, many wealth funds are active in investing strategically in the aerospace and defense arena. Mubadala Investment Company has been active in aerospace investments such as Piaggio Aerospace SpA, while SoftBank Group has tremendous exposure to artificial intelligence companies and semiconductors. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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