First Thai multi-asset government-backed infrastructure fund launched with global giant’s help

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Thailand has launched its first multi-asset government-backed infrastructure fund with legal advice from Baker McKenzie.

The global giant advised the State Enterprise Policy Office of the Thailand Ministry of Finance, as well as fund managers Krungthai Asset Management PCL and MFC Asset Management PCL on the establishment of the Thailand Future Fund (TFFIF).

The firm also advised in the IPO of T฿45.7bn, or about $1.9bn, of TFFIF units on the Stock Exchange of Thailand. The admission on 31 October was Thailand’s largest IPO since 2015.

The firm handled a wide array of matters, including fund and offering structure, legal and regulatory, and Thai law and US securities law.

The firm fielded teams in Bangkok and Singapore to guide the government and fund managers. The Baker McKenzie team was led by partners Professor Kitipong Urapeepatanapong, Komkrit Kietduriyakul, and Theppachol Kosol from the Bangkok office, as well as principal Ashok Lalwani from Baker McKenzie Wong & Leow, its Singapore member firm.

Lawyers from both countries also advised on the deal. From Bangkok, partner Kowit Adireksombat and senior associates Panlapa Chai-aya and Termpong Prongdong were part of the team. From Singapore, local principal Kyle Pilkington and senior associate Caryn Ng also assisted the team.

“The initial asset is the right to receive 45% of the toll revenue from two toll roads operated by the Expressway Authority of Thailand for a period of 30 years. The TFFIF deal is particularly novel, as it is the country's first fund-raising vehicle that enables public investors to invest in multiple public infrastructure assets operated by various state enterprises and government agencies in accordance with a new set of regulations issued specifically for this venture,”  Kosol said. “This will surely pave the way for other state enterprises and government agencies to use TFFIF as the funding vehicle and use the proceeds to speed up their key infrastructure development projects.”