Major local authority pension funds have outlined plans to join forces to create a potential £45bn pot to invest in a range of areas including key transport links.
In asubmission to government, Cllr Kieran Quinn, chair of the Greater Manchester Pension Fund (GMPF), said that GMPF and its partner funds are making progress in forming a Collective Asset Pool of £45bn.
Cllr Quinn said that by expanding the £500m infrastructure investment vehicle it launched with London Pensions Fund Authority (LPFA) in January 2015, GMPF will achieve a £1bn infrastructure investment pot ready for investment by the summer.
He said GMPF ‘has a firm and definite commitment to form a Collective Asset Pool of around £35bn with the Merseyside and West Yorkshire Pension Funds’, which it is calling the ‘Northern Powerhouse Pool’.
Merging the funds into a pool mechanism could produce cost savings of around £30m per annum 'on alternative/illiquid assets', Cllr Quinn states.
Cllr Quinn said GMPF is also ‘in open discussions with the pool of LPFA and Lancashire (£10 bn)’.
Howeve, in a joint submission to the Department for Communities and Local Government, the Greater Manchester, Merseyside and West Yorkshire funds only pledged a ‘10% commitment to infrastructure investment’.
Cllr Quinn said GMPF was ‘keen to create a significant investment pool, which will enable us to compete with global wealth funds when bidding for airports, shipping ports and new railway connectivity such as HS3 high-speed rail link between Leeds, Manchester and Liverpool to support our ambitions as recognised and supported by the chancellor for a "Northern Global Powerhouse"’.
The joint venture between GMPF and LPFA announced its first investment of £60m last November.