PHILIPSBURG–The general pension fund APS had an investable cash position of NAf. 140 million as of June 2018.
However, approximately NAf. 70 million is committed to investments that have already been approved by the APS board and are pending disbursement. The disbursement period for these funds is between the last quarter of this year and the next four years. Also, NAf. 70 million is committed to APS local real estate projects, which is expected to be disbursed according to the agreed-on disbursement schedules in the respective facility agreements within the next three to four years.
This was part of the information provided by APS Managing Director Nadya Croes-van Putten to Members of Parliament (MPs) during a meeting of Parliament’s Finance Committee last week Wednesday.
Croes-van Putten said that in addition to cash, APS has approximately NAf. 83 million in local time deposits, which could be allocated to local investments with a higher yield, if needed. Furthermore, APS has approximately NAf. 51 million in receivables, of which NAf. 39 million is owed by government. Once this money is received APS can invest it also.
In response to a question about the Central Bank for Curaçao and St. Maarten (CBCS) 60/40 investment rule, she said CBCS’ 60‐40 ruling dictates that local financial institutions such as APS should hold a minimum of approximately 60 per cent of their provision and debt in local investments.
As per July 2018, APS should have NAf. 308 million in local investments according to the 60/40 ruling. Currently, APS has invested NAf. 244 million in local investments. Therefore, NAf. 64 million of APS’ cash must still be allocated to local investments to fully comply with the 60/40 ruling.
“However, … NAf. 70 million of APS’ cash is committed to local investments that have been approved but are yet to be disbursed; and NAf. 50 million is committed to APS’ local projects. However, we still have approximately NAf. 51 million in receivables,” Croes-van Putten said.
“This situation is common for a relatively new financial institution (since 2012) that needs to find ways to prudently allocate its funds. Therefore, we foresee full compliance with the 60/40 ruling in the mid to long term period, dependent on how fast our pension provision grows, after which the pension fund will be able to manage its cash in a more effective manner by allocating un-invested cash to the international market.”
She said APS is continuously looking for solid investment opportunities in St. Maarten.
“Given the need for affordable housing in St. Maarten, profitable land and development transactions which can contribute to supplying such homes are welcome. APS believes that pre‐fabricated housing solutions such as Cubicco, once successfully implemented in St. Maarten, can be copied elsewhere — even in collaboration with private landowners — provided the project fits in the APS’ investment policies and matches APS’ risk appetite,” she noted.
“APS welcomes entrepreneurs/investors that want to develop eco-based projects. APS applies strict investment policies and as such we conduct comprehensive financial and legal due diligence. APS’ focus is to achieve the best return on investment for our participants, taking into account the right balance of risk and return.”
APS has local investments in utilities, tourism and real estate (affordable housing), which all benefit the social situation in St. Maarten, she said.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/81679-aps-has-naf-140-million-investable-cash-position