HK Stock Exchange appoints derivatives market expert as LME head

HONG KONG (AFP) - The Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEx) on Tuesday said it had appointed derivatives market veteran Garry Jones to head the London Metal Exchange (LME), which it acquired last year for US$2.32 billion (S$2.98 billion).

Hong Kong's bourse last June bought the 136-year-old LME - the world's largest exchange trading non-ferrous metals, including aluminium and copper - in a bid to strengthen its role as a bridge between China and international markets.

"We are very fortunate to have been able to attract a tried and tested leader of Garry's calibre," HKEx chief executive Charles Li said yesterday in a statement. "I am convinced that we have succeeded in attracting someone who will also help to shape the direction of the entire HKEx Group."

Mr Jones will take over on Sept 30, subject to regulatory approval, from Mr Martin Abbott, who announced his resignation in June. The LME's new head is not a metals industry insider. Instead, Mr Jones was formerly the chief executive of NYSE LIFFE, a derivatives arm of NYSE Euronext, and has more than 30 years of experience in exchanges and financial services, according to the HKEx.

Mr Brian Bender, chairman of the LME, said of the appointment: "Garry has a wealth of international experience of exchanges, markets and trading and is very familiar with UK rules and regulations."

The HKEx also announced that Mr Diarmuid O'Hegarty, the LME deputy chief executive, was resigning and would leave in six months.