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Nobel Prize amounts to be reduced by 20 per cent

June 13, 2012 10:02 IST

Nobel Prize will not be the worth as much as it used to be, after the Nobel foundation announced a 20 per cent slash in the value of its prestigious prizes this year, aimed to safeguard its long-term capital prospects.

The board of directors of the Nobel Foundation has announced a cut in the prize money to be awarded to 2012 laureates in view of bad investment decisions in the past and to safeguard the economic base of the prestigious prizes.

At its meeting this week, the board set the amount of the 2012 Nobel Prizes at Swedish Krona 8.0 million per prize, amounting to a lowering of the prize sum by 20 per cent.

"The Nobel Foundation regards this as a necessary measure in order to avoid an undermining of its capital in a long-term perspective...Another part of the picture is that during the past decade, the average return on the Foundation's capital has fallen short of the overall sum of all Nobel Prizes and operating expenses", the Foundation said in a press release.

"The Nobel Foundation is responsible for ensuring that the prize sum can be maintained at a high level in the long term. We have made the assessment that it is important to

implement necessary measures in good time," Lars Heikensten, executive director of the Nobel Foundation, said.

The announcement comes as Myanmar's pro-democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi -- who was awarded the Nobel Peace prize in 1991 -- will collect it on Saturday in Oslo, where she is also to deliver the Nobel Lecture.

The foundation said that the capital left behind by scientist and entrepreneur Alfred Nobel must be managed in such a way that it will be possible to award the Nobel Prize in perpetuity, while guaranteeing the independence of the prize-awarding institutions.

"The decision to lower the prize related to the assessment that the board of directors makes of the potential for achieving a good inflation-adjusted return on the Nobel Foundation's capital during the next several years", the Foundation said in the release.

The costs of the Nobel Foundation's central administration and the Nobel festivities are also being reviewed.

Prasun Sonwalkar in London
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