Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC is set to join four other foreign state-owned investors in setting up an office in Sydney, Australia.

The office, which will be the fund’s 11th worldwide, will be established in 2022. Other funds with offices established in the city are all Canadian public pension funds: CDPQ, CPP, OMERS and OPTrust.

Global SWF data shows that foreign state-owned investors have deployed approximately US$35 billion in capital to Australia from 2016, mostly in real assets with a heavy emphasis on infrastructure and logistics real estate.

State-owned investors have been piling into the Australian real estate market in recent years . Annual investment peaked at US$4.7 billion in 2019, but fell by around 30% last year to US$3.3 billion as the pandemic shook the market.

Attention has been focused on office towers and shopping malls, but 2020 saw a shift in emphasis with a move towards diversification. Logistics assets featured strongly, totalling US$940 million of SOI allocations to real estate – 29% of the total.

So far this year, GIC has invested US$2.9 billion in Australia, into the ESR Australia Logistics Partnership, Chevron’s HQ in Perth and in Novotech. This has brought its total investment since 2011 to roughly US$8.4 billion.

GIC chief executive Lim Chow Kiat said, “We believe the new office will better support the management of our existing assets and increase interaction with local partners so we can generate more value-add together.”