There is definite proof that sustainability-focused funds are outperforming their conventional counterparts. But some experts believe the traditional explanations for this are wrong.
Norway's central bank has become the second overseas institution to be awarded more than $1 billion in qualified foreign institutional investor (QFII) quota from China's State Administration of Foreign Exchange (Safe).
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) was the first foreign institution to surpass that mark in August. A month later, in September's round of handouts, Norges Bank received $500 million, bringing its total QFII quota to $1.5 billion.
China's foreign exchange regulator removed the $1 billion cap for QFII holders in December, although it took eight months before a foreign institution exceeded that amount. It only removed this cap for sovereign wealth funds and central banks, which Safe prefers as they are long-term investors.
Qatar Investment Authority reportedly applied for $5 billion in QFII quota last year, but has yet to receive it.
QFII holders with $1 billion in overall quota include the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, Bank Negara Malaysia, Singapore's GIC, Kuwait Investment Authority and Temasek Fullerton Alpha.
Last month's other recipients include Taiwan-based Fubon Life Insurance, which with its September batch of $150 million now has $300 million, while Asia Capital Reinsurance, CTBC Life Insurance, DBS Bank and Keywise Capital Management obtained $100 million each.
Safe awarded $1.05 billion in total to six institutions in September, and $47.5 billion to 216 institutions since the programme launched in 2003.
Separately, Harvest Global Investors was the largest recipient of renminbi-denominated QFII quota in September, obtaining Rmb2 billion ($326.7 million). That brings its total RQFII quota to Rmb11.25 billion.
HSBC, meanwhile, became the latest foreign bank to obtain RQFII quota, receiving Rmb800 million. It is planning an RQFII fixed income product and is now targeting both institutions and retail investors, a spokeswoman says.
Fullgoal Asset Management (HK), Guotai Junan International, Income Partners and Bocom International Asset Management each received Rmb800 million, while Guoyuan Securities (HK) was awarded Rmb500 million.
Safe granted Rmb6.5 billion to seven RQFII holders in September. Since the launch of the RQFII programme in December 2011 to the end of September, Rmb134.3billion has been allocated to 42 holders.
To get the clarity they want to make informed portfolio decisions, asset owners and managers must now blend and adapt multiple sources of traditional and non-traditional data to create actionable insights, said speakers at a webinar hosted by AsianInvestor and IHS Markit.
The country's largest insurer Ping An set up a $62 billion green investment target by 2025. Several more players are also joining the hunt for sustainable assets.
The boss of Thailand’s second-largest pension fund hopes that proposed changes in the law will help her diversify more into overseas markets. She is particularly bullish on China.
Investors can still find spread premiums in niche private debt, with the asset class's prognosis looking strong, said a keynote speaker at AsianInvestor’s latest summit on Wednesday.