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Japan’s GPIF Pursues Feasibility Studies on Alternative Assets

Japan’s aging population and low birth rate are mounting pressure on the pension system to generate higher returns. A Japanese government agency showed a survey that said by 2060, the population of Japan will fall by 30%, down to 90 million people. Historically, the GPIF has been one of the largest purchasers of Japanese government debt. Japan’s US$ 1.3 trillion Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) has chosen four companies to conduct feasibility studies on conceivable future investments in alternative assets. These assets include private equity, real estate, and infrastructure investments. The chairman of the GPIF, Takahiro Mitani has ruled out hedge funds as a possible asset class.

The GPIF is contemplating private equity style investment programs.

The solicitation went out in August 2012. These studies will be due by the end of March 2013. The feasibility study results will be presented to the Japanese public and to the members of fund’s investment committee for review in the future.

The firms selected are the following:

  • Brightrust PE Japan Co., Ltd.
  • Atsumi & Sakai, Japanese legal firm
  • Capital Dynamics
  • T&D Asset Management

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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