TORONTO, July 12, 2007 - First Asset Equal Weight REIT Income Fund (the "Trust") (TSX: RIT.UN) announces that a special meeting of unitholders has been called for August 7, 2007.
At the meeting, unitholders will be asked to consider, and if deemed acceptable, approve an extraordinary resolution which will amend the Trust's investment objectives and guidelines to permit the Trust to invest on an actively managed basis in any real estate investment trust ("REIT") or real estate corporation that is listed on a Canadian stock exchange. The objective of the resolution is to convert the investment strategy of the Trust from one of passive investment management to one of active investment management, and to expand the scope of investments that the Trust can make to include real estate corporations and REITs, regardless of market capitalization, in order to preserve and enhance value for unitholders.
The Manager believes that in current market conditions it would be in the best interest of unitholders to allow the Manager to have increased flexibility to make active portfolio decisions, including to overweight or underweight certain holdings, or to take a more defensive stance by maintaining a higher cash position.
The recent reforms to the taxation of income trusts have had some implications for REITs, especially those REITs involved in the lodging and senior care sectors. The Manager believes that active management and the inclusion of real estate corporations in the Trust's portfolio will preserve and enhance value as the Canadian real estate sector navigates through restructurings and conversions relating to the recent tax reforms.
As part of this resolution, unitholders will also be asked to approve a change to the annual management fee payable to the manager of the Trust to 0.75% of the net asset value of the Trust, and a change to the name of the Trust to "First Asset REIT Income Fund".
Further details of the matters to be considered at the special meeting are outlined in a Notice of Meeting and Management Information Circular that will be delivered to unitholders in connection with the meeting. Unitholders of record on June 29, 2007 will be entitled to receive notice of and vote at the meeting. If needed, an adjourned meeting will be held on August 17, 2007.
For more information, please call Paul Dinelle (Executive Vice-President) at (416) 642-1289 or (877) 642-1289.