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Kuwait, Areva ink nuclear cooperation deal, possible stake opportunity according to sources

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According to BI-ME, “Kuwait and France on Thursday signed an initial agreement on nuclear cooperation that includes exchanging expertise on the field, the official news agency KUNA reported. The agreement encourages the peaceful use of atomic energy to bring in vital energy resources such as electricity, the report said, without providing any details of the cooperation. Earlier on Wednesday KUNA had reported that Kuwait may be interested in acquiring a stake in France’s nuclear giant Areva, citing unidentified industry sources.

‘Areva says it needs the capital injection to finance the expected rapid development in the nuclear market,’ Kuna said.

The news agency added that Anne Lauvergeon, the CEO of Areva, did not give details on ongoing contacts with potential investors, ‘but industry sources have said that Kuwait could be interested in taking a stake in Areva’.

Lauvergeon reportedly said Wednesday that the talks taking place with potential partners are at a government-to-government level and that a number of partners were involved. In March, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Sheikh Jaber Moubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah said Kuwait will cooperate with France in the field of nuclear power, hinting it could take a stake in the nuclear group Areva. The Financial Times also said in March that the French government was considering opening the share capital of Areva to Middle Eastern investment funds with a view to reinforcing its political influence and the nuclear group’s prospects in the region. Exploratory talks had been held about the possibility of sovereign wealth funds buying minority stakes of 1%-5% in Areva, which is majority owned by the French government, the FT said, citing people close to the matter.”

read more: Business Intelligence Middle East

Funds and Ownership, KKR Partners with Shinhan Financial

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South Korean financial giant Shinhan Financial Group Co., Ltd. reached a preliminary agreement with KKR & Co. to form a series of global buyout funds that could raise up to 5 trillion KRW. KKR and Shinhan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Seoul in early October. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Norwegian Government Recommends SWF Remains at Central Bank

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There was speculation that Norway Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) could be managed outside of Norges Bank. The Norwegian government shot down this idea and recommended Norway’s GPFG remain in Norges Bank. This recommendation came in the form of a white paper submitted to the Norwegian Parliament, Stortinget.

Norway’s Minister of Finance Siv Jensen, commented in a press release, “The Government proposes a new and modernised governance structure for Norges Bank. Moving forward, this new structure lays the foundations for the sound management of the central bank and of the GPFG.”

Some Central Bank Recommendations

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Invesco Buys OppenheimerFunds for $5.7 Billion

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Invesco Ltd. signed a deal to acquire OppenheimerFunds, Inc. from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). In turn, MassMutual and the OppenheimerFunds employee shareholders will receive a combination of common and preferred equity consideration, and MassMutual will become a significant shareholder in Invesco, with an approximate 15.5% stake. This strategic transaction will bring Invesco’s total assets under management (AUM) to more than US$ 1.2 trillion. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2019, pending necessary regulatory and other third-party approvals. The transaction gives Invesco access to more third-party distribution platforms.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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