Kuwait invests $ 24 bn in UK

Updated 29 June 2013

Kuwait invests $ 24 bn in UK

LONDON: The Kuwait Investment Authority has more than doubled its investment in Britain over the past 10 years to more than $ 24 billion, Bader Mohammed Al-Saad, managing director of the KIA said yesterday.
Kuwait’s sovereign wealth fund, which manages state assets in the world’s fourth-biggest oil exporter, is the oldest sovereign fund tracked by the SWF Institute with an estimated $ 342 billion in assets, one of the world’s largest.
“The KIO now manages more than $ 120 billion globally compared with only $ 27 billion 10 years ago,” Al-Saad said.
“The KIA has invested more than $24 billion in the UK across all asset classes, sectors and industries. 10 years ago it was $ 9 billion,” he said at an investor lunch in London yesterday. The lunch marks the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the Kuwait Investment Office, the fund’s main investment arm.
“In the world of trade and industry, the close cooperation between the KIA and the United Kingdom is a force for good which I believe will continue and grow in the years to come,” he added.
The KIO has around $ 9.24 billion invested in equities according to Thomson Reuters data, with stakes in companies including BP, Vodafone and HSBC.


Trump advisers urge delisting of US-listed Chinese companies that fail to meet audit standards

Updated 55 min 42 sec ago

Trump advisers urge delisting of US-listed Chinese companies that fail to meet audit standards

  • Growing pressure to crack down on Chinese companies that avail themselves of US capital markets but do not comply with rules
WASHINGTON: Trump administration officials have urged the president to delist Chinese companies that trade on US exchanges and fail to meet US auditing requirements by January 2022, Securities and Exchange Commission and Treasury officials said on Thursday.
The remarks came after President Donald Trump tasked a group of key advisers, including Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and SEC Chairman Jay Clayton, with drafting a report with recommendations to protect US investors from Chinese companies whose audit documents have long been kept from US regulators.
It also comes amid growing pressure from Congress to crack down on Chinese companies that avail themselves of US capital markets but do not comply with US rules faced by American rivals.
“We are simply leveling the playing field, holding Chinese firms listed in the US to the same standards as everyone else,” a Treasury official told reporters in a briefing call about the report.
The US Senate unanimously passed legislation in May that could prevent some Chinese companies from listing their shares on US exchanges unless they follow standards for US audits and regulations.
Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen, who sponsored the bill described the recommendations as “an important first step,” but said that “without the added teeth of our bill, this report alone does not implement the requirements necessary to protect everyday American investors.”
The administration’s recommendations, if implemented via an SEC rulemaking process, would give Chinese companies already listed in the United States until Jan. 1, 2022, to ensure the US auditing watchdog, known as the PCAOB, has access to their audit documents.
They can also provide a “co-audit,” for example, performed by a US parent company of the China-based affiliate tasked with auditing the Chinese firm. However, companies seeking to list in the United States for the first time will need to comply immediately, the officials said.
A State Department official told Reuters the administration plans soon to scrap a 2013 agreement between US and Chinese auditing authorities to set up a process for the PCAOB to seek documents in enforcement cases against Chinese auditors.
China said on Friday that the two countries have “good cooperation” in monitoring publicly listed firms.
“The current situation is that some US monitoring authorities are failing to comply with their obligations, and what they are doing is political manipulation — they are trying to force Chinese companies to delist from US markets,” foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a media briefing.
The PCAOB has long complained of China’s failure to grant requests, giving it scant insight on audits of Chinese firms that trade on US exchanges.
The report also recommends requiring greater disclosure by issuers and registered funds of the risk of investing in China, as well as mandating more due diligence by funds that track indexes and issuing guidance to investment advisers about fiduciary obligations surrounding investments in China.
The moves come amid rising tensions between Washington and Beijing over China’s handling of the coronavirus and its moves to curb freedoms in Hong Kong, among other issues.