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The Canadians Are Building a National Infrastructure Bank

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In November 2016, Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau stood up in the House of Commons and announced plans to create a new infrastructure bank, a Canada Infrastructure Bank, for the country. Building infrastructure and creating jobs are popular themes that resonate with many voters in Western countries. Tapping on wealth fund, pension and infrastructure asset manager hunger for suitable infrastructure opportunities, the bank would seek to attract C$ 4 to C$ 5 in private capital from institutional investors for every C$ 1 of Canadian federal money. The proposed bank aims to have C$ 35 billion in capital to help finance infrastructure projects. C$15 billion would come from federal infrastructure funding, while C$ 20 billion would be solicited from institutional investors. The formation of a new infrastructure bank was a campaign promise the Liberals talked about during campaign season. However, legislation to actually form the bank will come after Canada’s federal budget.

The reality is that most institutional investors like sovereign funds focused on infrastructure are attracted to brownfield investments, while governments want new construction (greenfield). This infrastructure bank seeks to give assurances for investors to take on large greenfield infrastructure investments.

Beginning with Leech

Canada’s Liberal government seeks to partner with Canadian pension funds and overseas investors such as sovereign funds to back country infrastructure. The government needs a networking chief with extensive contacts. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

Korea’s NPS Invests In Crypto Exchanges Amid Crackdown

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South Korean news outlets have reported that South Korea’s National Pension Service (NPS) has unwittingly invested roughly US$ 2.4 million in four local cryptocurrency exchanges – Korbit, Upbit, Coinplug, and Bithumb – even as regulatory officials move to subdue the unbridled enthusiasm for crypto trading that has flourished in the tiny country. The US$ 550 billion pension scheme invested in the cryptocurrency exchanges indirectly through two venture capital funds handled by external managers with exclusive rights over asset allocation, according to an NPS officer.

Crypto trading has proved wildly popular in South Korea, drawing an estimated one million citizens to the largely unregulated exchanges that have cropped up over the past few years. South Korea, which is ranked first in the world in terms of internet sped, is the largest market for cryptocurrency transactions behind Japan and United States, and accounts for 29.8% of trade globally, according to a report released by the Korea Insurance Research Institute (KIRI) in December 2017.

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Ripple Attempts to go the Central Bank Route

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San Francisco-based Ripple, a tech company that professes the use of blockchain to reboot the payment systems globally, landed a big deal with the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA). Ripple started a pilot program that will be spearheaded by SAMA and a few Saudi banks to deploy xCurrent for cross-border payments. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Investment Corporation of Dubai Eyes $1 Billion Loan Deal

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The Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD) plans to raise US$ 1 billion in a loan to refinance existing debt. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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