Participation will enable access to broader array of international investment opportunities
TORONTO, July 6, 2016 /CNW/ - The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) is pleased to support the Ontario government's creation of the Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (IMCO) – a new provincial entity that will help strengthen the WSIB's Investment Funds and its Employees' Pension Plan Investment funds.
The Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (IMCO) Act 2015, announced today, creates a new body that will enable the WSIB and other public entities to "pool" the management of their investments. This will achieve a sufficiently large asset pool to broaden access to other asset classes and gain more diversification.
"This is an important step for the WSIB to strengthen investment performance and asset management capabilities, to sustain and protect benefits for workers and maintain stable premium rates for employers," WSIB Chair Elizabeth Witmer said.
WSIB President and CEO Tom Teahen explained that a larger pool of investment fund management enhances risk management and provides for more predictable returns with less volatility, while enabling access to a broader spectrum of international investment opportunities such as infrastructure and real estate.
"Enhanced risk-adjusted performance can also be expected over time," Teahen added.
The first two voluntary participants in IMCO are the WSIB and the Ontario Pension Board (OPB).
"The WSIB has made great strides recently in becoming a more financially sustainable organization," Teahen said. "Central to our success has been a robust investment program that has seen our Investment Fund grow from $14 billion to over $26 billion since 2009."
Teahen stressed that ownership of the WSIB's investments will not change, and that the WSIB will continue to set its strategic asset allocation and work with IMCO to establish principles, policies and procedures on how IMCO will invest these funds in a prudent, risk-attentive manner.
"The WSIB's and OPB's Investment Funds will remain separate from each other and any other future participants of IMCO," Teahen noted. "Each organization will continue to independently administer their respective funds."
Witmer said that strong corporate governance with a focus on risk management will ensure that the organization's fiduciary responsibilities remain met in its involvement with IMCO.
"We owe it to Ontario workers and employers to carefully build on our recent investment successes," Witmer said. "Pooling the management of our investment funds through IMCO is the next logical step."
SOURCE Workplace Safety & Insurance Board
For further information: Christine Arnott, WSIB Public Affairs, 416-344-4202, Christine_arnott@wsib.on.ca