South Africa’s Government Employees Pension Fund to Invest $1.6 Billion in Africa

South Africa’s Government Employees Pension Fund will invest about 25 billion rand ($1.6 billion) in unlisted companies across the continent, according to people with knowledge of the matter, renewing a contract with its adviser more than a year after it initially expired.

The Public Investment Corp., which manages more than 2.1 trillion rand in assets, will decide on the investments, according to a joint statement the two companies released on Tuesday, without giving financial details. GEPF may set aside more money for investing in unlisted securities later, the people said, asking not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly about the matter.

The size of the initial allocation is much less than 70 billion rand that the pension fund had set aside in the previous contract. The reduction comes in light of a judicial inquiry against the PIC that concentrated on its Isibaya Fund, which makes investments in unlisted assets and focuses on Black economic empowerment transactions and social infrastructure projects. Isibaya is key to the strategy of both the GEPF and PIC in terms of tackling South Africa’s social inequality and environmental challenges. The unit “provides finance for projects that generate financial returns, while also supporting positive, long-term economic, social and environmental outcomes,” according to the PIC’s website.

GEPF and the PIC didn’t immediately respond to requests for comments on the amount. The investment plan is: Invest 300 million rand and 500 million rand per entity, although attractive investments starting at 100 million rand “will be considered,” according to the statement; and The so-called Rest of Africa development portfolio will mainly comprise of investments between $20 million and $40 million.

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Written by Mercy ANURIKA

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