‘CLEAN BILL OF HEALTH’ FOR CRT PROPERTY
The Canal & River Trust’s commercial investments produced a financial return that was ahead of inflation and better than the market benchmark – and the Trust has managed its property in line with its policies and plans as agreed with the Government when CRT was set up in 2012. These are the conclusions of the annual report by the Protector, whose role is to monitor CRT’s compliance with its 2012 Grant Agreement with the Government.
Most of CRT’s commercial assets are in property: £657.9m worth of property brought in a total return of 10.6 percent (compared to the market return of 10 percent), split roughly 50/50 between rental income and increased capital value. Non-property investments (which CRT moved into a few years ago as a way of diversifying) did less well, at 5 percent (compared with the market return of 7.5 percent), but this only accounts for a relatively small proportion of CRT’s portfolio, and Protector Malcolm Naish blames the apparently poorer performance on currency fluctuations. Overall, the Protector concludes that “CRT have managed the assets in accordance with the Group Investment Policy”, which is in line with the Grant Agreement.