Global pension assets have grown significantly to $54trillion, the Chief Executive Officer of the World Pension Summit (WPS), Mr. Chris Battaglia disclosed on Thursday.
Battaglia, made the remark at a media conference in Lagos, ahead of the third World Pension Summit ‘Africa Special,’ expected to take place in Abuja between September 27th and 28th, 2016.
According to him, in a lot of developed countries, pension assets are now more than 100 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
“Global retirement assets are growing in size and volume and a shift from defined benefits to defined contribution. In most developed countries, pension assets have also grown in relation to their economies. With great assets come greater responsibility. Assets of the 300 pension funds globally averaged nearly $14trillion,” he added.
Earlier, the Director General of the National Pension Commission (PenCom), Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, explained that the Commission, in furtherance to its mission of promoting a pension industry that impacts on nation-building and national development organised the first and second edition of the World Pension Summit ‘Africa Special’ in 2014 and 2015 respectively.
She stated that the themes of the previous summit were selected based on the need to lay solid foundation for the establishment of an enduring pension system in Africa and chart ways for effectively channeling the pension funds to sustainable investments such as railway, power and real estate.
Furthermore, the PenCom boss said it was envisaged that the summit would serve as a catalyst to actively stimulate economic development across the continent.
“The third summit which has as its theme: “Pension Innovations: The Africa Perspective,” is aimed at driving into greater prominence, the revolutionary strength and achievements of African governments in the area of pension and social benefits. It is expected that this year’s summit would again, bring together professionals and highly experienced resources from across the world in the areas of investment, actuarial science, insurance coverage and other pension related fields in other to consolidate on the gains of the first two summits.
“The third edition of the WPS promises to harness Africa’s talents in pension and other support services such as investment, insurance, actuarial valuations amongst others. Indeed, the summit would provide a platform among regulators and operators, both in pension and the financial market to usher a new dawn of innovations in pension administration, particularly towards extending coverage, promoting quality service delivery and to channel pension funds safely towards investments that have visible and measure impact on the continent,” the PenCom boss added.
Unlocking Investments into Africa’s Renewable Energy Market
The African Energy Guarantee Facility (AEGF) is launching a virtual roadshow of free webinars allowing a deeper understanding of risk issues for renewable energy projects on the continent, and conversations around risk mitigation solutions. The first webinar will take place on Thursday, 23 September from 14:30-16:00 hrs. EAT.
The session will be oriented on how to get more energy projects from the drawing board to the grid. While the energy demand in African economies is expected to nearly double by 2040, and although the potential for renewable energy is 1,000 times larger than the demand, only 2GW out of almost 180GW of this new renewable power were added on the African continent.
Clearly not good enough! To improve the situation within the next two decades, new solutions need to be implemented urgently. De-risking and promoting private sector investments will play a crucial part of it.
In this 90-min interactive session, AEGF partners: the European Investment Bank (EIB), KfW Development Bank, Munich Re and the African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI) will share their experience and provide valuable insights on how they were able to come together and design practical solutions for investors and financiers of green energy projects in Africa aligned with SDG7 objectives.
Across Africa, the complexity of renewable energy projects and their long tenors hold back crucial energy investment. Tailored to the specific needs and risk profiles of sustainable energy projects, AEGF will tackle the investment challenge by providing underwriting expertise and capacity tailored to market needs.
The AEGF will significantly boost private investment in sustainable energy projects, both expanding access to clean energy and contribute to achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals. The scheme supports new private sector investment in eligible renewable energy, energy efficiency and energy access projects in sub-Saharan Africa.
Shell Signs Agreement To Sell Permian Interest For $9.5B to ConocoPhillips
Shell Enterprises LLC, a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell plc, has reached an agreement for the sale of its Permian business to ConocoPhillips, a leading shales developer in the basin, for $9.5 billion in cash. The transaction will transfer all of Shell’s interest in the Permian to ConocoPhillips, subject to regulatory approvals.
“After reviewing multiple strategies and portfolio options for our Permian assets, this transaction with ConocoPhillips emerged as a very compelling value proposition,” said Wael Sawan, Upstream Director. “This decision once again reflects our focus on value over volumes as well as disciplined stewardship of capital. This transaction, made possible by the Permian team’s outstanding operational performance, provides excellent value to our shareholders through accelerating cash delivery and additional distributions.”
Shell’s Upstream business plays a critical role in the Powering Progress strategy through a more focused, competitive and resilient portfolio that provides the energy the world needs today whilst funding shareholder distributions as well as the energy transition.
The cash proceeds from this transaction will be used to fund $7 billion in additional shareholder distributions after closing, with the remainder used for further strengthening of the balance sheet. These distributions will be in addition to our shareholder distributions in the range of 20-30 percent of cash flow from operations. The effective date of the transaction is July 1, 2021 with closing expected in Q4 2021.
Shell has been providing energy to U.S. customers for more than 100 years and plans to remain an energy leader in the country for decades to come.
Oil Gains 1 Percent on Possible Tight Supply
Oil prices rose on Tuesday as analysts pointed to signs of U.S. supply tightness, ending days of losses as global markets remain haunted by the potential impact on China’s economy of a crisis at heavily indebted property group China Evergrande.
Brent crude gained 95 cents or 1.3% to $74.87 a barrel by 0645 GMT, having fallen by almost 2% on Monday. The contract for West Texas Intermediate (WTI) , which expires later on Tuesday, was up 91 cents or 1.3% at $71.20 after dropping 2.3% in the previous session.
Global utilities are switching to fuel oil due to rising gas and coal prices, and lingering outages from the Gulf of Mexico after Hurricane Ada that imply less supply is available, ANZ analysts said.
“While slowing Chinese economic growth and uncertainty around the (U.S.) Fed’s tapering timetable weighed on market sentiment, other developments still point to higher oil prices,” ANZ Research said in a note.
Still, investors across financial assets have been rocked by the fallout from heavily indebted Evergrande (3333.HK) and the threat of a wider market shakeout in the longer term.
“Evergrande’s woes are threatening the outlook for the world’s second-largest economy and making some investors question China’s growth outlook and whether it is safe to invest there,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA.
While that view of the state of China’s economy is weighing on markets, the U.S. Federal Reserve is also expected to start tightening monetary policy – likely to make investors warier of riskier assets such as oil.
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