According to two confidential informers from UK-based news agency Reuters, Singapore’s only two sovereign wealth fund (SWF) companies are bidding against each other over UK supermarket chain, Tesco, in South Korea.

In what seems like a waste of state resources, both Singaporean SWFs partner with a separate foreign investment arm each to enter compete in the S$8.4 billion deal. Temasek Holdings will be partnering with Korean private investor firm, MBK Partners, while GIC has been confirmed to partner with US investment firm, Carlyle. A Temasek Holdings spokesperson did not deny the deal and has declined to comment over the matter.

Photo of Temasek Holdings by thestraitstimes
Photo of Temasek Holdings by thestraitstimes

The two Singaporean SWFs invest Singaporeans’ retirement money, the CPF, and the national reserves by buying cheap special government bonds as low as 2.5%. Temasek Holdings boast an investment return of 16% since inception in 1974, while GIC’s rolling  annualised 20-year rate of return is 4.9% in 2014.

GIC has more than S$300 billion of fund under its management, while Temasek Holdings just have S$266 billion. The CPF withdrawal age will be raised to 67 in 2018 while the Minimum Sum has increased to S$161,000 in April this year. According to the ruling party government, Singaporeans can expect to withdraw their CPF money later as they are expected to live longer.

Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say said that to increase the CPF monthly payout, Singaporeans can work beyond 67 and delay their Withdrawal Age up to 70 years old.

You may read the original Reuters article here.

Related stories:
Lim Swee Say: Work beyond 67, delay your CPF withdrawal and you get higher payout