The choice of CEO for the world's largest sovereign wealth fund has come under further scrutiny following a request for a review of the appointment by a Norwegian political party.
Nicolai Tangen is due to join the 10.3 trillion Norwegian kroner ($1.14 trillion) Government Pension Fund Global, Oslo, on Sept. 1. His was named as the next CEO, replacing Yngve Slyngstad, last year.
His appointment has been the subject of scrutiny as some believe there may be conflicts of interest related to London-based hedge fund AKO Capital, which Mr. Tangen founded.
The Ministry of Finance decided Thursday to open a dialogue to discuss the appointment with Norges Bank, a spokeswoman for the ministry said. Norges Bank affiliate Norges Bank Investment Management runs the assets of the fund. The Norwegian Department of Justice decided Wednesday to order a review of the appointment, the spokeswoman added.
The most recent scrutiny follows a request Wednesday by Fremskrittspartiet, Norway's Progress Party, to assess the appointment.
While the responsibility for hiring GPFG's CEO lies with Norges Bank's executive board, Finance Minister Jan Tore Sanner has registered the Progress Party's request to get involved, a translation of a statement said.
The Progress Party said it is concerned that the situation "could damage the reputation and management" of the fund and called on Mr. Sanner to open a dialogue to discuss the matter with Norges Bank.
Mr. Tangen's employment contract already details a number of moves to distance him from AKO Capital, including reducing his voting right to 43%.
The main concern is whether an agreement for Mr. Tangen to prevent possible conflicts of interest "is good enough," a translation of Progress' statement said. "It is unfortunately that Tangen's current and future ownership interests and financial matters were not clarified before the appointment."
A spokesman for Norges Bank referred to an Aug. 13 letter to the government's finance committee, signed by central bank Governor and Chairman of the executive board Oystein Olsen. Mr. Olsen said Norges Bank did not violate the Central Bank Act, the Public Administration Act or the bank's ethical principles when Mr. Tangen was appointed CEO of GPFG.
Spokesmen for NBIM could not immediately be reached for comment.
Last week, Norway's Labor Party added its voice to criticism of Mr. Tangen's appointment.