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Knut N. Kjær resigns as head of the Norwegian oil fund

Knut N. Kjær resigns as head of Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM). NBIM manages the USD 328 billion Government Pension Fund – Global and the bulk of Norges Bank’s foreign exchange reserves.

19 September 2007

After a long period of consideration, I have notified the Governor of Norges Bank of my wish to step down. I think the time is right for Norges Bank and NBIM, and on a personal level I would like to pursue new challenges, says Kjær.  – It has been a privilege to have played a part in securing Norway’s financial wealth for future generations. I am grateful for a strong display of confidence and will miss the close and rewarding contact with my highly competent colleagues in NBIM, says Kjær.

Governor Svein Gjedrem praises Kjær’s contribution during a particularly important phase of the Fund’s development. – Kjær has contributed to achieving excellent results, building up an efficient management organisation and to the Fund’s renown at home and abroad. We would have warmly welcomed his continued presence, but we take note of his wish to conclude his career at Norges Bank. We are now faced with the demanding task of finding his successor, says Gjedrem.

Knut N. Kjær (51) led the project that prepared the ground for the management of the petroleum fund and the bulk of the foreign exchange reserves and in January 1998 he became head of the new management organisation NBIM. Important challenges have included building up equity management, efficient market investment of substantial inflows of new capital, generating added value through active management and promoting corporate governance through ownership interests.

The Fund was established by separate act in 1990. The initial capital transfer of USD 300 million was made in the spring of 1996. The Fund has grown rapidly. The Fund’s total assets under management are now about USD 370 billion, including Norges Bank’s foreign exchange reserves. The capital is invested in 3000 companies worldwide. NBIM has a staff of approximately 150 from around 15 countries and has offices in Oslo, London, New York and Shanghai.

Kjær will continue as head of NBIM until a successor has taken up his post.

Svein Gjedrem and Knut N. Kjær will be available for further information. Contact will be arranged through Director of Communications Siv Meisingseth, phone +47 22 31 63 50 or mobile +47 91 63 89 12.