SOUTH KOREA - The National Pension Service (NPS) has confirmed it is to invest almost US$22bn over the next ten years as it seeks to buy into energy and mineral resources.
It is understood that the NPS has entered into contracts with three of Korea's state-run energy and mineral developers to provide the necessary funds to invest in natural resource opportunities.
The NPS is interested in proven sources which will deliver stable and reliable returns rather than high-risk exploration of new fields.
Kim Ho-shick, president of the NPS, said to reporters in Seoul: "In the past the pension fund usually only invested in stocks and bonds, but this is not enough to generate the level of profits needed."
The Korean economy has one of the world's most advanced electronics industries, with companies such as Samsung and LG reliant on nickel and other minerals to manufacture hi-tech devices.
The Co-operative Group's Somerfield Pension Scheme has completed a buy-in with Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC), insuring the benefits of its pensioner members.
Caroline Rookes CBE and Michele Hirons-Wood have joined The Pension Superfund's board of trustees to focus on maintaining governance standards and safeguarding member benefits.
The first specialist independent firm advising pension schemes on bulk annuities or moving to a consolidator has been set up with ambitions to shake up the market.