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Friday 24 May 2019

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Romanian pension funds willing to trade infra investments for scrapped decree

Written by Sunniva Kolostyak
12/03/2019

Romania’s private pension funds are, according to its industry association, ready to invest in major infrastructure projects to offer the government a way to resolve a widely-criticised emergency decree.

Reuters has reported that the president of Romania’s private pension association (APAPR), Radu Craciun, said the industry would be happy to invest in areas that could deliver higher returns and benefit the economy, such as infrastructure.

However, this would involve the government amending the December legislation, which was approved without an impact assessment or public debate, and introduced turnover taxes for energy and telecoms firms, capped gas and electricity prices and raised capital requirements for mandatory private pension fund managers.

It also enables Romanians to withdraw from pension funds after contributing for five years. In a meeting earlier this month, fund managers asked officials to scrap the €800m share capital requirement.

After the meeting, Senate speaker and junior coalition partner Calin Tariceanu said the government wanted pension funds to take a more active role investing in the real economy, adding a compromise could be reached, the news agency said.

In an interview with Reuters, Craciun said: “Romanian private pension managers have pleaded over the last few years for a diversification of investments for better risk management and exposure to accelerated growth economic sectors.”

“This entails using securities and unlisted investment vehicles such as private equity funds or real estate funds. Other solutions for private pension funds to finance infrastructure works could be infrastructure bonds, specialised private equity funds or participating in syndicated loans.”



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