World’s Largest Pension Ramps Up Infrastructure Investing

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Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund has increased its infrastructure investment by ten-fold as it builds out its alternative investment department, according to a Bloomberg report.

The GPIF, the world’s largest pension fund, ramped up its infrastructure commitments significantly between March and September of this year.

More from Bloomberg:

The fund’s investments in infrastructure rose to about 70 billion yen at the end of September, based on figures supplied by GPIF, up from 5.5 billion yen at the end of March. The decision to invest in infrastructure is drawing interest abroad, with India’s railway minister urging the nation to invest in rail projects there.

“Infrastructure investments can provide stable long-term revenue and so we anticipate it will help steady pension finances,” Mori said in an e-mailed response to questions Dec. 4. “We haven’t set a number on how many people we will add to the department. If there are good people we will hire them.”

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GPIF teamed up in February 2014 with the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System and the Development Bank of Japan to jointly invest in infrastructure such as power generation, electricity transmission, gas pipelines and railways in developed countries. It may expand infrastructure investments to as much as 280 billion yen over the next five years as part of the agreement, it said in a statement at the time.

The alternative investment department also can invest in private equity and real estate, although it hasn’t yet, Mori said.

This year’s infrastructure investments were made through the unit trust structure announced for the joint OMERS projects. The investment decisions are made by Nissay Asset Management Corp. according to the mandate decided by the GPIF. The GPIF team makes sure the details are in line with the investment mandate it outlined for the trust, Mori said.

GPIF manages $1.1 trillion in assets.

 

Photo by Ville Miettinen via Flickr CC License

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