ALFI turns a quarter of a century
Luxembourg's Fund Industry Association (ALFI) proved it was still going strong when it celebrated 25 years in Luxembourg with an event at the Grand Théâtre on Tuesday.
The landmark anniversary comes a year after the Luxembourg investment funds industry reached a record high for assets under management, with Luxembourg holding 25 percent of total assets under management in European funds and a third of UCITs.
Finance Minister Luc Frieden paid tribute to the journey which has led to this resounding success, thanking ALFI for working closely with the government.
"ALFI has always been open to new ideas, willing to enter into dialogue and consider new legislation as an opportunity," he said, adding: “If the fund industry has become a success in Luxembourg, it is because we listen to each other."
These sentiments were shared by ALFI chairman Marc Saluzzi, who said that the relationship between the government and the not-for-profit funds organisation had been "based on respect and trust."
Describing how Luxembourg established such an important role within the funds industry, Williams Mackay CEO Diana Mackay explained that the country adapted early on to the evolution of European legislation, beginning with the first European Directive on UCITs organisation of collective investment schemes, implemented in 1988. She went on to say that it was UCITS which “gave life” to investment funds in Luxembourg but also the symbiotic relationship with European funds had played a crucial role.
ALFI president from 1998 to 2001 Rafik Fischer spoke with humour of the key landmarks in ALFI's history and that of the Luxembourg fund industry. He recalled the moment he received a phone call from his French counterpart, who was upset to learn that Luxembourg had overtaken France in terms of volume of assets managed.
He said that he hoped that in future an ALFI president would receive a similar call, this time from his or her US counterpart.
Translated from an article by Linda Cortey