ESG has increasingly been ingrained into asset owners' investment policies, including the external fund managers they hire, according to institutional investor executives.
Swelling assets are prompting regional pension funds to look beyond home markets and outsource alternatives and ESG investments, say experts.
It is the first time the China pension fund has sought to hire external managers for overseas mandates since 2015. The mandates include its first mandate for responsible investing.
The state pilgrims fund of Malaysia is set to expand its diversity of equity investments as part of a strategy to better diversify its investments to support the savings of hajj pilgrims.
The Korean pension funds are adding to their offshore investments in order to diversify and improve their returns on mounting asset bases.
The country's biggest insurer saw its return on investment fall last year, and president Lin Dairen sees alternative assets as key to boosting performance.
The Hong Kong fund house has been reprimanded by the local regulator, which may harm its ability to compete on portfolio mandates, said the CIO of a large institutional investor.
The Bureau of Labor Funds has invited bids for $2.4 billion in domestic mandates, while the Public Service Pension Fund has handed $600 million to three foreign asset managers.
Taiwan's Bureau of Labor Funds will hand out 32 global portfolios on behalf of its sub-entities – 16 for ESG equity and 16 for absolute-return fixed income.
The $10 billion Social Security System has been planning to award portfolios to external fund houses for the first time, but must wait for a new chief to be named before it can proceed.
Traditional asset managers are competing with alternative specialists to gain new mandates as regional institutions add more of the asset classes to their product mix.
Eligible asset managers must submit applications by October 31 under the new public pension fund scheme, with the chosen firms to be announced by the end of the year.