Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (0388) has no immediate plans to acquire or merge with other exchanges, chairman Ronald Arculli said Friday.
His comments came after the New York Stock Exchange confirmed last week that the bourse would set up an office in Beijing to work with the Shanghai Stock Exchange.
Arculli said on the sidelines of the Economic Summit 2007 in Central that acquisition or close cooperation between different exchanges depends on whether there are mutual commercial interests for the parties.
"Besides, there are a lot of difficulties in terms of culture, regulation and time zone for the parties to overcome," said Arculli.
"A simple thing like where to locate a data center is already an issue they need to deal with before they could achieve a successful merger."
He said what the Hong Kong exchange would do right now is "more realistic things," for example, "strengthen our competitiveness and review our listing fees."
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing chief executive Paul Chow Man-yiu said on the sidelines of the summit that the exchange will launch yuan futures contracts in mid 2007 at the earliest.
"The exchange executive committee has endorsed the yuan futures proposal, which will be tabled at the board meeting next week. Once endorsed, the consultation will be released," he said.
He said yuan futures may run market-making systems and so the exchange needs discussions with financial institutions, some of which will function as market makers.
He said that the exchange is also considering launching other futures products such as agricultural, gold, energy and carbon dioxide emission futures.
The proposals are part of the exchange's three-year strategic plan to be announced next week, he said.
"But we will first hire consultants to look into the feasibility of the proposals."