The new leader of Birmingham city council wants to create a “West Midlands sovereign wealth fund” that will invest the region’s public sector pension funds in new homes and infrastructure.
John Clancy, elected at the end of November, said he wanted to take the £11bn West Midlands local government pension fund, the third-largest local authority fund in the UK, and pour it into Birmingham and the surrounding region.
1) You want diversity in pensions funds. So no, you don’t invest the lot in the same place where the people live and work.
2) How is there going to be a return from those investments in housing and infrastructure? Rents? User fees? OK, that’s fine: now, now you’ve got that revenue stream associated with that investment why do you want to fund it purely from the pensions of the people who live in the area? Why not allow anyone to invest?