28 Mar 2024

Dutch Pension Funds Willing to Invest Billions in Energy Transition

28 Mar 2024  by reuters   
The Netherlands' five largest pension funds on Wednesday said they were willing to invest billions in the country's energy transition and to help support investment in the electricity grid.

In a letter, addressed to the political parties that are trying to form the country's next government, the funds offered their joint financial firepower and expertise to help finance electricity grid expansion and sustainable heating projects in the euro zone's fifth largest economy.

"We want to make a bigger impact, we can and want to invest more in the Dutch energy transition," the funds, with a total of around 900 billion euros ($975 billion) in assets, said in the letter published on Wednesday.

The funds said electricity shortages would risk "jeopardising our business climate and climate goals, will cripple construction and will keep us dependent on imported fossil fuels".

They called for ambitious and reliable policies from a new government for the energy transition and better public/private cooperation to finance projects.

The funds did not specify exactly how much they were willing to invest.

One of the issues the new government will have to tackle is the congestion on the Dutch electricity grid, which is struggling to cope with a rapidly increasing demand for electricity and a surge in the supply of solar power.

Dutch state-owned electricity grid operator TenneT in November said it will have to double its investments in the next decade to meet demand.

Coalition talks in the Netherlands have dragged on since the election victory of far right leader Geert Wilders' PVV party in November last year.

Wilders and his three prospective coalition partners resumed talks this month after weeks of standstill, but an agreement on a government pact is not yet in sight.

Earlier this month, ABP, the Netherlands' largest pension fund, said it would cut investments with a large climate impact, while targeting more money to companies and projects that help to improve society and the environment.

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