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Gulf Sovereign Wealth Funds Bid For Queensland Motorways

The Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC) is looking to sell the toll road company Queensland Motorways Ltd. With the thirst for Australian transportation infrastructure from institutional investors, QIC is seeking to dispose the highly-regulated motorways to the highest bidder.

The government of Queensland transferred the Queensland Motorways to the QIC in 2011 – being valued at A$ 3.088 billion. The motorways had A$ 2.9 billion of debt before the asset transfer. Some policymakers were surprised at the time, many believed the motorways would be sold off immediately. The justification in 2010 was that the government wanted legislative protections to make certain the tolls would not increase more than the consumer price index.

The motorways are a 43 mile network, counting around 80 million vehicles per annum.

Currently, three groups of investors are bidding for Queensland Motorways. Analysts say bids will be around A$ 5 billion.

Three Investment Consortia
Group 1
Hastings Funds Management
Kuwait Investment Authority
Abertis Infraestructuras

Group 2
Transurban Group
Abu Dhabi Investment Authority

Group 3
IFM Investors (owned by 30 superannnuation funds)
Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
Borealis Infrastructure

UNICEF and NBIM to Host Meetings on Children’s Human Rights

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), a United Nations programme headquartered in New York City, has partnered with Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM) to facilitate a series of meetings between companies to discuss issues surrounding children’s human rights.

According to the news release, “the network will facilitate dialogue between leading brands and retailers in the garment and footwear industry to strengthen children’s rights.”

NBIM is invested in many listed companies and have invited them to join a network to tackle these issues. Over the next two years, the organizations plan to hold three workshops as well as quarterly meetings surrounding these issues.

“Over time, we hope and expect that the network will contribute to improved market practices among companies and greater respect for children’s rights,” says Carine Smith Ihenacho, Global Head of Ownership Strategies, in a NBIM press release.

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SouthGobi’s CEO Arrested, CIC Struggles with Investment

The China Investment Corporation (CIC) has long struggled with its investments in coal assets, specifically in globally-listed coal miner SouthGobi Resources Ltd, which operates its flagship coal mine in Mongolia. In November 2009, CIC and SouthGobi Resources inked a convertible debenture deal. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Qatar Central Bank Deals with MSCI

MSCI, a stock index company whose benchmarks influence investor behavior, has tremendous indirect power impacting the stock markets of smaller economies. In 1988, MSCI released its emerging markets index, a now-widely-used benchmark for many institutional investors wanting access to growth markets. China and South Korea make up the majority of the benchmark, but smaller economies such as Poland, Chile and even Qatar make up other pieces of it.

[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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