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Milken Institute Publishes Recommendations for Philippines Sovereign Wealth Fund

News Release
Milken Institute Publishes Recommendations for Philippines Sovereign Wealth Fund

MANILA, PHILIPPINES, JANUARY 30, 2023 — The Milken Institute has released a report, “Best Practices of Sovereign Wealth Funds: The Case for the Philippines,” in support of the Philippines’ creation of a fund. The report is based on a series of expert group meetings from the Milken Institute’s Financial Innovations Lab® held in September 2022 and provides actionable recommendations for government leaders to consider as they design the structure for the planned Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF) to meet development goals.

Ahead of the report’s release, Budget and Mangement Secretary Amenah Pangandaman, said during the Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum in December, “We tapped them [Milken Institute] to help us when we were working on the type of sovereign wealth fund, because there are several types – some are using it for their pension system, others are using it for their natural resources. Ours is for development, to develop and to fund at least our infrastructure projects and programs.”

A well-structured SWF with strong governance will help the Philippines to attract foreign investment, increase the return on investment in national savings, and promote growth and social development. As the Milken Institute’s Senior Director of Innovative Finance, Caitlin MacLean notes “The creation of the MIF will give the Philippines the opportunity to strengthen their economy, allowing for long-term investments in the nation’s infrastructure. ”

The Milken Institute’s report summarizes several imperatives:

  1. Articulate a clear objective with funding that can accelerate investment goals. Create a ring fence around revenue sources to ensure flexibility and minimize political conflict of interest. The legislation to create the SWF should set forth the funding source(s), allowing for future surpluses or revenue as the economy evolves.
  2. Create a governance structure with a clear delegation of duties, operational accountability, and disclosure policies based on the Santiago Principles to ensure effective communication, control, and supervision of the fund. Consider using investment professionals and independent experts to manage and oversee the fund for enhanced financial expertise and political neutrality.
  3. Engage community stakeholders, capital markets, government leaders, and the public through a structure for disclosure of operations and activities. This engagement will help sustain buy-in and support in the years ahead.
  4. Design a long-term investment strategy, and designate performance benchmarks aligned to short- and long-term goals, minimal currency risk, and a range of indicators to measure financial performance, ESG risk, and developmental goals. Benchmarks and indicators offer defined boundaries for savings, investments, and withdrawals, and serve as a template for disclosing investment and economic outcomes that include both quantitative (financial) and qualitative (social impact) information.

The recommendations from the report are being shared with government decision-makers and stakeholders working on creating the MIF. The Milken Institute continues to support the Philippines in this endeavor and will provide a forum for follow-up conversations.


Media Contact

Yeen Chong
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+ 65 9155 3197

About the Milken Institute

The Milken Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank focused on accelerating measurable progress on the path to a meaningful life. With a focus on financial, physical, mental, and environmental health, we bring together the best ideas and innovative resourcing to develop blueprints for tackling some of our most critical global issues through the lens of what’s pressing now and what’s coming next. For more information, visit

About the Milken Institute Asia Center

The Milken Institute Asia Center extends the reach and impact of Milken Institute programs, events, and research to the Asia-Pacific region. We identify opportunities to leverage the Institute’s global network to tackle regional challenges, as well as to integrate the region’s perspectives into the development of solutions to persistent global challenges.