Canadian Investments in Australia Octupled in 2015, Led By Pensions

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Canadian investors put a record-setting $34 billion into Australia-related investments in 2015, and Canadian pension funds led the way.

Caisse de dépot et placement du Quebec, for its part, has 20 percent of its infrastructure portfolio invested in Australian projects.

More details from the Globe and Mail:

Canadian purchases in Australia jumped more than eightfold in 2015, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Caisse de dépot et placement du Quebec bought into an electricity grid in New South Wales state and opened a Sydney office with six executives this year. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management Inc. are part of rival groups competing for Australian port and rail company Asciano Ltd.

“We’re there to invest in infrastructure, and they are the model,” Ron Mock, chief executive officer of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, which manages about $155 billion, said in a Bloomberg TV Canada interview. “They’ve figured out how to attract capital from all over the world.”

[…]

The creativity in the Australian system should serve as a global model, bridging the gap between investors that favour mature assets and the need for riskier new infrastructure projects, says Mark Machin, international head for Canada Pension, the country’s largest pension plan.

“It’s excellent policy,” he said. “They’re getting tremendous interest and tremendous value from international capital and domestic capital.”

Australia, in a push to ramp up infrastructure investing, recently offered incentives to regions who sell state assets and use the proceeds to fund infrastructure.

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