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MAS launching US$5b fund for private equity and infrastructure investments

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THE Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is launching a US$5 billion fund for private market investments, to be managed by top global private equity and infrastructure fund managers.

THE Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is launching a US$5 billion fund for private market investments, to be managed by top global private equity and infrastructure fund managers.

The managers must be committed to deepening their existing presence in Singapore or establishing a significant one.

Under the programme, MAS will allocate US$5 billion of its own capital as part of its investment in the private markets asset class.

The fund was announced on Tuesday by Enterprise Singapore chairman and MAS board member Peter Ong at the Global Investor Summit, being held during this year's Singapore Fintech Festival.

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Mr Ong said: “This builds on the success of MAS’ existing external fund manager programme for the public markets asset class, which has anchored global asset managers in Singapore and catalysed the growth of our asset management industry.”

According to a report by Bain & Co, there are currently more than 220 private equity and venture capital managers located in Singapore. For the past five years, their assets under management grew at a compound annual growth rate of 28 per cent, to reach S$190 billion.

Around 85 per cent of their investments go into Asia, with Asean as a top investment destination, followed by India and China.

Mr Ong said that the US$5 billion programme will help develop a stronger platform for growth finance and infrastructure development, and create a deeper and vibrant private markets ecosystem in Singapore that will strengthen the financing channels to support enterprises.

He highlighted that companies are staying private longer.

“There is now a greater recognition among Asean companies that private capital is not simply just another source of funds, but also a key form of ’smart capital’ that comes with technology, business knowhow and networks useful to companies to grow and scale,” said Mr Ong.