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Parliamentary Replies

GIC And Temasek Holdings (Losses)

15 Jan 2009

Date: 15 January 2009

Question No. 170 (by Ms Sylvia Lim, Non-Constituency Member):

To ask the Minister for Finance what is the extent of losses (paper or realised) suffered by Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) and Temasek Holdings arising from the financial meltdown in the United States in 2008 and the related events worldwide.

Reply by Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam:

In October 08, Member of Parliament for Sembawang GRC, Ms Ellen Lee asked a similar question. The challenging situation that global investors faced then remains. As at 31 December 08, the MSCI World (Equities) had declined by 42% in 2008, slightly worse than the 40% decline as at end October 08. The MSCI (Singapore) fell by 50% over the year. Investments by GIC and Temasek have inevitably been affected, like those of other global investors. However, their overall value has fallen by less than the decline in global equity markets, as they maintain diversified portfolios and had taken precautionary actions early in the crisis to reduce their exposures to the equity markets.

Temasek reports the market value of its portfolio in the annual Temasek Review. GIC now reports its long term returns on a moving average basis, which will be updated in the next annual GIC Report.

GIC and Temasek’s strategies of investing on a diversified basis for the long term, and maintaining sound governance and risk management practices, enable them to ride through market cycles, including severe market declines such as in the current global crisis. These strategies also put them in a position to take advantage of any opportunities that may arise from the current downturn.