Qatar Investment Authority Hosts The 6th International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF)
The International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF) was established by the International Working Group of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IWG) in Kuwait City on April 5-6, 2009. IFSWF is a voluntary group of Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs), which meet, exchange views on issues of common interest, and facilitate an understanding of the Santiago Principles and SWF activities.
IFSWF convened its sixth annual meeting in Doha, Qatar on November 19-20, 2014, hosted by the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA). The meeting comprised of senior officials of Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) from more than 28 countries across the world. Invited senior representatives from multilateral organisations, private sector, and academia also attended. H.E. Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser Al- Thani, Prime Minister and Interior Minister, provided the inaugural address, and guests were welcomed to the event by H.E. Ahmad M. Al-Sayed, Minister of State and CEO of QIA.
The meeting unanimously agreed upon a "Doha Agreement", adopting a three-year strategic plan to ensure free flow of long-term global capital and strong real returns for the progeny; with great emphasis on transparency. The strategic plan, agreed by IFSWF, seeks to leverage those strengths to work towards becoming an important global reference on the governance, investment and operational practices of IFSWF members. Additionally, through championing long-term investment based on financial and economic grounds, the funds will contribute to maintaining a stable global financial system. Moreover, the three-year strategic plan encompasses knowledge-sharing between IFSWF members; cooperating on issues of mutual interest; on-going training and development for new members; and the potential for combined efforts to identify and implement research.
IFSWF additionally agreed on utilizing the Santiago Principles, which is a framework of principles and practices voluntarily endorsed by IFSWF members with an emphasis on appropriate governance and accountability arrangements and sound, prudent conduct of investment practices. One of the principles is that, wherever the SWF's activities have significant direct domestic macroeconomic implications, those activities should be closely coordinated with the domestic fiscal and monetary authorities, so as to ensure consistency with the overall macroeconomic policies.
IFSWF also welcomed five new members within the meeting, namely Fondo Strategico Italiano Spa., Fundo Soberano de Angola, Joint Stock Company Sovereign Wealth Fund "Samruk-Kazyna", Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority and Russian Direct Investment Fund. The meeting noted that there are currently 82 SWFs globally and "21 countries are considering establishing new sovereign funds, of which many are already participating in IFSWF meetings as observers".