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First State Investments closes resources fund to new business

The First State Investments Global Resources Long Short Fund Limited was soft closed to new business at the end of June 2006.

The fund now totals over USD 317m (as at 10 July 2006), and the investment strategy has been managed by David Whitten, Head of Global Resources Equities since 13 August 2004, returning 100.4% (since launch on 13 August 2004. The investment strategy was managed as a segregated mandate from 13/08/2004 to 31/03/2005 when all assets were transferred into the First State Investments Global Resources Long Short Fund Limited), according to a statement from the firm.

The fund is designed to generate strong absolute returns through investing both long and short in equities and related instruments in the resources sector globally.

David Whitten said: 'First State Global Resources Long Short Fund has the ability to provide upside and reduce losses in falling markets by shorting inferior companies such as high cost producers and those with a poor growth outlook and weak balance sheets. The resource sector is large, diverse and can be inefficient and therefore is ideal for shorting strategies. Our team are specialists in their field and combine technical and commercial skills to our investment style. We believe that site visits are essential to understand fully the assets controlled by companies in the resource sector.'

Michael Stapleton, Head of Institutional Business. Said: 'We have always stated that we would soft close the First State Global Resources Long Short Fund to new business in order to maintain our ability to add value. We have been very pleased with the quality of investor that the product has attracted right across Europe, and the pace of new business growth. We are now planning to launch a global energy long short fund in the short term, to sit along side the suite of global resource funds managed by David Whitten and the team. Early interest in this product has been strong, and once again it is intended that the size of this new portfolio will be capped.'
Background note:
First State Investments is the international operation of Colonial First State Global Asset Management, the asset management business of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, one of Australia's largest financial services organisations. Colonial First State Global Asset Management manages GBP 51.8 billion as at 31 March 2006.

First State provides a range of specialist investment management services. Core areas of focus include global equities, Asia Pacific and global emerging markets equities, global fixed interest and smaller companies equities. Investments are managed through pooled vehicles and segregated mandates.

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