KUWAIT Jan 23 Kuwait's sovereign wealth fund,
one of the world's largest, will focus on increasing its
infrastructure investments in British, U.S. and European markets
and is also looking at the international real estate sector, its
managing director said.
Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) Managing Director Bader
al-Saad also told pan-Arab channel al-Arabiya that growth in
capital and real estate markets was unlikely to carry on.
"It is difficult for this growth to continue because the
actual circumstances aren't likely to align again," he said in
an interview on Thursday, according to al-Arabiya's website.
The KIA, which does not release details of its investments,
has around $386 billion under management, according to the
Sovereign Wealth Funds Institute, which ranks it as the
sixth-largest in the world.
The KIA was part of a Canadian-led consortium which earlier
this year bid for Severn Trent but eventually walked
away after the British water company refused to engage in talks
before a bid deadline expired, according to sources.
The KIA, which manages the major oil producer's wealth, has
stakes in companies including BP, Vodafone and
HSBC, according to Thomson Reuters data.
It has also has a $2.5 billion investment quota in China,
the highest possible for a foreign investor, according to a
report on Kuwait's state news agency KUNA published earlier this
Saad expressed concern over "the high level of cash in many
markets in the U.S., Europe, Japan and some developing countries
that have contributed to the abnormal rise in the values of
assets," the channel said.
There is exaggerated optimism in the market and it is
unlikely that the circumstances which led to the rise in assets
will align again, especially considering that interest rates are
at zero in some countries, al-Arabiya quoted him as saying.
These developments have led people to buy assets, such as
stocks and real estate, which has resulted in abnormal price
hikes which do not reflect world economic growth, he added.
Commenting on the rise in the value of the U.S. stock
market, Saad said: "it is very difficult to continue at this