The Government has passed a memorandum for setting up a Sovereign Fund for Investment, rallying some 200 profitable state-owned companies.
The Government in Bucharest wants to create new instruments for public investment, in line with the goals stipulated by the governing program for the 2017-2020 period. One such instrument is the Sovereign Fund for Development and Investment, for the setup of which the Government passed a memorandum on Thursday.
The fund is aimed at boosting economic growth and supporting funding and investment in competitive, profitable and sustainable sectors, with a mass economic effect as a result of attracting capital and financing resources, Economy Minister Alexandru Petrescu has said.
The Romanian official said the fund will be managing the assets of state-owned companies and use the revenues of profitable companies derived from dividends or by capitalizing on underperforming assets in order to list them on the stock market. Alexandru Petrescu.
Alexandru Petrescu: “Many state-owned companies are being assigned to different ministries. Each company nominates representatives in the shareholders’ general assembly. With this new Fund, all companies will be managed by a single entity, compiling the expertise of various ministries, management expertise, from the shareholder’s point of view. Decision-making will be centralized and will become the task of a board of directors, made up of people who are recruited as part of a public and transparent process”.
The Sovereign Fund for Development and Investment will contribute both to Romania’s efforts to gain the status of an emerging market for its domestic capital market by increasing liquidities on the Bucharest stock exchange, as well as to increasing the level of absorption of non-reimbursable EU funds, by means of ensuring the co-funding financial sources of investment projects, a Government press release shows.
According to Minister Petrescu, the Fund will be a partner for institutional investors, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the European Investment Bank, mutual funds and other private investors. In order for the launch process to be backed and sanctioned by the main stakeholders, a consultation was started with the main investors, Minister Alexandru Petrescu has added. The Minister went on to say that a draft law will be adopted regulating the functioning and structure of the fund. The Romanian state will be the sole shareholder of the fund. Similar funds are being run in Belgium, Norway, France or Poland.