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Saudi FinMin Says No Need for Sovereign Wealth Fund

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Saudi Arabia’s Finance Minister Ibrahim Abdulaziz Al-Assaf said there was no need for the country to create an official sovereign wealth fund to manage its oil reserves. The vast pool of petrodollars are managed by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA), the Kingdom’s central bank. The majority of those assets are in liquid securities. The Shura Council, Saudi Arabia’s advisory body, had discussions of creating an official sovereign wealth fund to manage oil reserves, but made no concrete decisions.

Ibrahim Abdulaziz Al-Assaf served as vice governor of SAMA and has been a board member of Saudi Aramco since 1996.

View the Profile of SAMA Foreign Assets

The Saudi Finance Minister spoke on Saudi television on Christmas, saying the reserves are professionally managed by Saudis as well as external fund managers. He also said the investment returns were similar, or at some years higher, compared to Norway’s sovereign wealth fund. Saudi Arabia also has the Public Investment Fund (PIF), which focuses more on domestic investments. The Cabinet of Saudi Arabia on December 25, validated a 2015 fiscal budget, showing a US$ 39 billion deficit.

Youtube is Crashing

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Youtube, a video service of Google, is crashing. Institutional investors are major investors in Alphabet, the parent company of Google.

At 6:41 PM on October 16, 2018, Team YouTube tweeted, “Thanks for your reports about YouTube, YouTube TV and YouTube Music access issues. We’re working on resolving this and will let you know once fixed. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and will keep you updated.”

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Investors Eye Tencent’s Next Moves

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Formed in Shenzhen in 1998, Chinese tech giant Tencent Holdings Limited is the largest gaming company in the world and the largest gaming market is in China. In August 2018, China’s Education Ministry disclosed its monitoring how many new games are coming online. Tencent needs approval from the Chinese government to publish games. In 2017, almost 9,000 games were approved in China compared to only 1,931 in 2018. Chinese President Xi Jinping is keen on combating shortsightedness in children from the overuse of video games.

Anime

Tencent will inject US$ $317.6 million into Chinese streaming site Bilibili in return for 12.3 % equity in the company. Bilibili is a video sharing site known for streaming anime, comics, and games. Tencent’s investment follows previous funding rounds from Tiger Global Management, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, BlackRock, and Alkeon Capital Management. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Ireland Strategic Investment Fund Signs MoU with IFC

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The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF) inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will initially focus on investment opportunities in the food and agriculture sector, given its strength and importance for the Irish economy. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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