First Waqf investment fund launched in Saudi Arabia for public offering
RIYADH â"The Executive Director of the General Organization of King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center and the Chairman of Wareef Charity Foundation, Dr. Majid bin Ibrahim AlFayadh, announced that the Alinma Wareef Waqf Fund is the first investment fund in the Kingdom open for public offering, in partnership with Alinma Investment Company.
Dr. AlFayadhâs announcement came during a press conference held Monday at KFSHRCâs HQ in Riyadh. AlFayadh stated âThe units will be offered to subscribers (individuals or institutions) at a value of SR 1,000 per share.â âAll proceeds from the fund will be used to support Wareef charity programs to achieve its objectives and aspirations.â He added.
Al-Fayyadh said Alinma Wareef Waqf Fund is licensed by the Capital Market Authority and the Public Authority for Endowments, which is the fundâs regulat ory body at the same time. He said, "The Charity Foundation seeks to be a leader in both health and social care sectors in Saudi Arabia, while supporting healthcare Services provided at the General Organization of KFSHRC by contributing to relieving the suffering of patients and their families, funding research and participating in raising awareness in the healthcare field.â
According to the Executive Director, Wareef Charity looks forward to achieve Vision 2030 through effective contribution to the nonprofit community and to the gross domestic product from 1 to 5% and help apply the standards set by the government in all its businesses and activities.
AlFayadh said the objectives of "Wareef Charity" are to support scientific and applied research and bolster Saudi specialized medical experts in the medical and healthcare fields, in addition to supporting rehabilitation aid, promoting of specialized healthcare services and subsidizing disease prevention progr ams.
During the press conference, Saleh bin Abdullah AlHnaki, CEO of Alinma Investment Company, announced that Alinma Bank has already supported The Alinma Wareef Waqf Fund by subscribing in 100,000 units worth SR 1 million, as part of the bankâs interest in achieving social solidarity and benefit Waqf channels, which is the provision of medical care to those entitled.
AlHnaki denied that the Fund's units are traded in the Saudi market, as they are totally exclusive to the waqf parties. "The Fund is subject to the Investment Funds Regulations issued by the Capital Market Authority. The fundâs terms and conditions include the channels available to follow up on the units after starting the fundâs operations.â He said.
He confirmed that the investment objective of the Fund is to preserve and develop the Waqf on the long run by investing in multiple assets in accordance with a conservative investment strategy that is consistent with the waqf formula and its predetermined channels by waqf parties.
He also said that Waqf funds offer the ability to diversify the endowment portfolio with high efficient management that benefit the Waqf itself, the Waqf provider and the beneficiary.
Waqf funds create opportunities for the public in the participation, control, governance, transparency and disclosure, professional and specialized management, diversification of investment, management of the situation records, as well as the development of the contribution of the Saudi non-profit sector because its current contribution is modest compared to the world average, where Harvard University Fund, for instance, is considered one of the worldâs most important Endowment Investment Funds with an approximate value of $36 billion in 2014.
The new fund mechanism includes a fund manager, a board of directors, a Shariah committee, an executive committee, legislative and regulatory bodies, an auditor, custodian and certified evaluators.
He fur ther said: âThe Fund Manager shall invest the fundâs assets to achieve growth in the endowed capital and distribute a share from the returns on an annual basis to the waqf channels specified embodied in the health and medical services provided by the beneficiary institution, which is the King Faisal Specialist Hospital Foundation.â
AlHnaki noted that Waqf Investment Funds are one of the statutory tools dedicated to the management and development of endowments in an institutional manner, in view of the legal framework and policies related to transparency and governance. In addition, AlHnaki stressed that this type of funds is subject to the supervision of the related government entities. â" SG