Econostrum | Economic News in the Mediterranean

Four Mediterranean sovereign wealth funds join forces to make co-investments

Written by Eric Apim on Tuesday, March 29th 2022 à 17:55 | Read 473 times

The Foundation will be based in Malta (photo: F.Dubessy)
The Foundation will be based in Malta (photo: F.Dubessy)
MEDITERRANEAN. Four Mediterranean countries have launched a foundation of sovereign wealth funds from Europe, the Middle East and North Africa on Tuesday 29 March 2022 in Malta. The idea was born during the Med 7 Summit in 2019 in Malta from a discussion between the French President and the Maltese Prime Minister. It is now taking shape with a signature between Malta Government Investments (MGI) - which led the work to set it up - the French public investment bank and The Sovereign Fund of Egypt (TSFE).

"This network of sovereign wealth funds in the region will discuss and share co-investment opportunities," commented Herald Bonnici, Managing Director of MGI.

The Compañía Española de Financiación del Desarrollo (COFIDES) has also initialled a memorandum of understanding with these three SWFs to become a member of this new network which will be based in Malta. "They are currently key financial players thanks to their stabilising role through medium and long-term investment strategies. COFIDES is also an active member of the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF) and the One Planet Sovereign Wealth Funds network," says José-Luis Curbelo, President of COFIDES.

"Long-term investment partnerships"

"The aim of this collaboration is to provide a common regional platform for the four members to meet and exchange on investment opportunities with the ultimate goal of achieving national and sustainable economic development in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa," says a Bpifrance press release. The EMENA Sovereign Wealth Funds Foundation also plans to "raise capital from the signatory sovereign wealth funds to contribute to the financing of certain projects or companies with the aim of attracting significant private investment flows to the EMENA zone".

Ayman Soliman, CEO of the Egyptian Sovereign Wealth Fund, welcomes "the fund's commitment to unlocking the investment potential in Egypt by creating long-term investment partnerships with investors and sovereign wealth funds in the region." He said, "TSFE's leading role in developing flagship projects in Egypt that are economically and environmentally sustainable lays the foundation for cooperation and knowledge sharing with foundation members, opening up new investment opportunities and achieving development goals in the region. It is indeed another step towards achieving our Egypt Vision 2030 goals". Launched in January 2022 by the President, this sustainable development strategy includes a roadmap with economic, social and ecological axes.

For Bpifrance, this foundation presents "an opportunity to strengthen its action in the Mediterranean region, to promote the economic development of its neighbouring countries and to generate business opportunities for French companies in the area", as indicated by Pascal Lagarde, its executive director in charge of international, strategy, studies and development.

According to the partners, the financing gap in this large region is around $700 to $900 billion (€630 to €810 billion). "Particular attention will be paid to green technologies, sustainable development, SMEs and innovation," says Bpifrance.

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