Canada's Caisse to buy 26.7 pct of Port of Brisbane

Thu Nov 28, 2013 5:37pm EST
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TORONTO Nov 28 (Reuters) - Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec said on Thursday it has agreed to acquire a 26.7 percent stake in the Australia's Port of Brisbane from U.S.-based Global Infrastructure Partners, in order to cash in on rising trade with expanding Asian economies.

Montreal-based Caisse, which manages major pension plans in the mostly French-speaking Canadian province of Quebec, did not disclose the price of the purchase, citing a confidentiality agreement. The deal is expected to close on Dec. 18.

"This is a first-class asset, well positioned to participate in the growth of Queensland and Asia's emerging economies," Macky Tall, Caisse's senior vice-president of infrastructure, said in a statement.

The Port of Brisbane, Australia's third-largest container port, is currently owned by a consortium of four companies. It handles cargo valued at around $50 billion each year, Caisse said.

Global Infrastructure Partners and Australian investment firms QIC and IFM Investors each own 26.7 percent, while the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority owns 19.9 percent.

Caisse is Canada's second largest pension fund, with assets of around C$175 billion ($165.32 billion).

Caisse and Canadian pension fund peers such Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan have been among the world's most active dealmakers in recent years, making major bets in Canada and abroad.