Institutional Investors, Canadian Government Launch G7 Investors Group

Representing $6 trillion in AUM, the group aims to further G7 initiatives.

A group of international institutional investors led by pension funds Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan is collaborating with the Canadian government to advance the objectives of the Group of Seven (G7) nations, including developing global infrastructure expertise, promoting women in finance in emerging economies, and increasing climate risk disclosure by corporations.

“What we’re announcing today is a way to demonstrate the potential of collaboration,” said Michael Sabia, CEO of CDPQ, in a release. “By working together as a group of funds in three specific areas, we seek to have greater impact and a more lasting effect.”

The group represents more than $6 trillion in assets under management, and includes partner institutions California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), Dutch pension fund PGGM, Alberta Investment Management Corporation, German financial services firm Allianz, UK insurance company Aviva, French asset manager Natixis Investment Managers, and Italian insurance group Generali.

“Climate change, gender inequality, and the infrastructure gap are all significant global problems that need collective action and robust, practical solutions,” said Ron Mock, CEO of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan. “Institutional investors have the resources and the platform to make meaningful contributions in all of these areas.”

The group said $3.3 trillion needs to be invested in infrastructure annually through 2030 to keep pace with projected growth. It said the infrastructure gap is particularly critical in emerging markets because of the lack of investable projects, and the necessary financial and operating expertise.

To address the infrastructure problem, the institutions will launch an infrastructure fellowship program for senior public-sector infrastructure managers in emerging and frontier markets. The fellowship will include a three-month intensive business school program.

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) is joining the partner institutions to launch an initiative to increase career opportunities in finance for women worldwide. It aims to do this by developing and implementing diversity policies derived from global best practices. The group will also establish a partnership with the CFA Institute, a Virginia-based global association of investment professionals, to establish an internship program to encourage women in developing markets to learn about, prepare for, and gain experience in the investment industry.

The group is also looking to speed up implementation of uniform and comparable climate-related disclosures. It said that although there is broad agreement among global investors about the need to disclose climate-related risks, there is no single methodology or approach to make disclosures easily comparable across institutions and companies.

The investors will use the final recommendations of the Financial Stability Board’s Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (FSB-TCFD) as a guide for a framework for climate-related disclosures.

“Comprehensive climate change reporting, a commitment to gender diversity, and sustainable infrastructure investing will help drive investment returns higher for all of us,” said Marcie Frost, CEO of CalPERS.

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