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ASEAN Exchanges not a threat: TWSE head

TAIPEI--A unified trading platform comprising three Southeast Asian exchanges will not affect foreign investors' willingness to invest in Taiwan, Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE) Chairman Schive Chi said yesterday.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Annual Meeting of the World Federation of Exchanges in Taipei, Schive said the new platform will primarily benefit brokers situated in the six major member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

“I don't think it will have any impact,” Schive said when asked about whether the ASEAN Trading Link will affect foreign investment in Taiwan.

“Foreign investors have already had the chance to invest in these ASEAN countries,” he said.

“The biggest beneficiaries of the new platform are investors in those countries. Foreign institutional investors don't need it.”

Although the Taiwan Stock Exchange has considered developing a similar integrated exchange platform, the exchange will approach the issue slowly and first focus on exploiting the opportunities created by a new currency clearing mechanism between Taiwan and mainland China, Schive said.

The currency settlement mechanism will allow Chinese yuan deposits and loans to be available in Taiwan and is expected to stimulate greater currency flows across the Taiwan Strait.

Schive's remarks came as ASEAN Exchanges, a collaboration of the seven stock exchanges of ASEAN members, announced Monday that the Stock Exchange of Thailand became the third member to be connected to the ASEAN Trading Link.

The ASEAN Trading Link is a network that allows connected brokers to execute trades directly without having to be licensed in that market by that exchange.

Bursa Malaysia and Singapore Exchange were the first two member exchanges to be connected to the ASEAN Trading Link last month, according to the ASEAN Exchange.

Together the three markets offer investors easier access to over 2,200 listed companies with a market capitalization of US$1.4 trillion, which accounts for 70 percent of the total market capitalization of the ASEAN markets, the ASEAN Exchanges said.

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