SYDNEY Feb 11 The Australian government said on Monday it will delay a decision on opening the country's equities clearing facility to competition for two years, extending the monopoly of stock exchange operator ASX Ltd .
Treasurer Wayne Swan said ASX had agreed to develop a code of practice with key stakeholders to ensure transparent and non-discriminatory access to its infrastructure in the interim.
Regulators will review the situation at the end of the two-year period and consider whether a new entrant should be permitted.
The decision applies only to the clearing of cash equities and does not extend to clearing and settlement services of either exchange-traded or OTC derivative markets or debt markets. (Reporting By Jane Wardell; Editing by Lincoln Feast)