Maharlika Investment Corp holds inaugural board meeting, identifies potential sectors to tap

The Maharlika Investment Corporation (MIC), which shall govern the Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF), held its first board meeting on January 3, 2024 to discuss the Fund’s capitalization and potential projects to tap, among other matters.

“In today’s meeting, we aim to fully operationalize the Maharlika Investment Fund. I look forward to your cooperation and support as we work together in mobilizing greater investments in the country’s growth-enhancing sectors, while upholding the highest standards of accountability, fiscal responsibility, and good governance,” Finance Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno said in his opening remarks.

Established under Republic Act (RA) No. 11954, the MIC serves as the sole vehicle responsible for mobilizing and utilizing the MIF for investments in transactions aimed at generating optimal returns on investments.

Investments in the Fund will be used to fast-track the implementation of the Philippines’ 197 high-impact infrastructure flagship projects (IFPs) worth about PHP 8.7 trillion.

MIC President and Chief Executive Officer (PCEO) Rafael D. Consing, Jr. presented the following sectors that may potentially be tapped by the MIF to achieve multigenerational commercial, economic, and social development value creation: Infrastructure; Oil, Gas, and Power; Agroforestry Industrial Urbanization; Mineral Processing; Tourism; Transportation; and Aerospace and Aviation.

The Board approved the presented Capitalization Scheme of the MIC amounting to PHP 125 billion.

The creation of the MIF, which is the Philippines’ first-ever sovereign wealth fund, is in line with the Marcos, Jr. administration’s 8-Point Socioeconomic Agenda for poverty reduction and Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028 for deep economic and social transformation.

The Fund is designed to catalyze economic development and accelerate the country’s growth by optimizing the use of government financial assets and promoting intergenerational management.

The MIC is composed of nine members led by Secretary Diokno sitting as the Chairperson in an ex-officio capacity and PCEO Consing as Vice Chairperson.

Other members include Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) PCEO Ma. Lynette V. Ortiz, Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) PCEO Michael O. de Jesus, and MIC Directors Vicky Castillo Tan, Andrew Jerome Gan, German Lichauco, and Roman Felipe Reyes.

During the meeting, the Board called for nominations for Chairpersons of the committees in accordance with Sections 21 and 26 of RA 11954.

PCEO Consing nominated Reyes to head the Audit Committee, while Tan was nominated to lead the Risk Management Committee.

The Board likewise approved the creation of additional Committees and PCEO Consing nominated the following to serve as Chairpersons: Gan for the Investment Committee, Lichauco II for the Corporate Governance and Ethics as well as Related Party Transactions Committees, Tan for Nomination and Remuneration Committee, and the PCEO himself for the Executive Committee.

Meanwhile, the Board approved the appointment of the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) as the Interim Fund Manager of the MIC.

PCEO Consing also updated the Board on start-up activities such as staffing and recruitment for the MIC and the hiring of its management team.

Also present during the meeting was the Fund’s Advisory Body, which is composed of the Secretary of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) represented by Undersecretary Leo Angelo M. Larcia and Treasurer of the Philippines Sharon P. Almanza.

The Advisory Body is tasked to guide the Board of Directors in the formulation of general policies related to investment and risk management.

The next MIC Board Meeting is scheduled to convene in the fourth week of January 2024.