(Corrects paragraph 2 to show this is not the first time the
LME has released data on Asian electronic trading)
* Bourse looking to expand in China, rest of Asia
* CEO also says no plans for yuan-listed products in London
* Will decide on future of open outcry trade later in year
By Melanie Burton and Polly Yam
HONG KONG, April 24 Up to a quarter of
electronic trading volume on the London Metal Exchange (LME)
comes from customers in Asia, its chief executive said,
indicating the bourse has a roboust base for its drive into the
The data shows that the LME, the world's biggest marketplace
for industrial metals such as copper and aluminium, has a
toehold in the Asian market, but it also still has huge room to
"Ten-25 percent on any given day of outright trading on the
electronic system comes from Asia," LME Chief Executive Garry
Jones said at a conference in Hong Kong, adding that overall
electronic trade volumes grew 28 percent last year.
The comments come as the LME is looking to boost business in
top metals consumer China, as well as countries such as
Indonesia, Singapore and South Korea, after being bought by Hong
Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd in 2012.
As part of that push, Jones said the LME plans to increase
"We will be adding new membership in London," he said on
Thursday. "We will also add membership into our HK platform ...
because we will be launching commodity products in Hong Kong."
HKEx announced this week that it would launch
renminbi-denominated mini-futures contracts for copper,
aluminium and zinc, as well as a thermal coal contract.
If successful, the new products could also rival the
Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE), which sets the reference price
for physical and futures metals trading in China.
The ShFE on Thursday said it planned to launch a base metals
contract as part of steps to internationalise its business.
Jones played down the impact of Barclays' decision this week
to quit most of its commodities trading businesses, part of a
broader retreat by banks as profits tumble in the face of
"There is a trend of eastern capital replacing western
capital, reflecting the realities of the world economy," he
"We are always concerned when people leave the market, but
that is their business decision. There are plenty of other
people willing to do that business."
He also said the exchange was assessing its fee structure
ahead of the September launch of its new clearing house and
would make a decision on pricing soon.
After the start of LME Clear, the exchange will accept
yuan-denominated collateral for its London-listed products,
although it has no plans to introduce yuan listed products in
The LME added Kaohsiung in Taiwan as a delivery point for
base metals last year, but the holy grail for the bourse is to
open metal warehousing facilities in China.
It has sought for many years to set up delivery networks in
the country, but Chinese authorities currently forbid foreign
exchanges from opening depots.
"Whether we are allowed to licence (warehouses) in China
will depend on demand from Chinese users," he said, although he
did not expect the rules to change in the near term.
He also said that a decision on the future of the LME's open
outcry floor, the last of its kind in Europe, would be made this
(Writing by Fayen Wong; Editing by Joseph Radford and David