Australia has awarded in-principal licence to equities trading platform Chi-X Global to trade listed shares in the country, reported Financial Times. Starting from fourth quarter of this year, Chi-X Australia, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chi-X Global, will commence trading listed shares.

The licence is likely to end Australia Securities Exchange’s (ASX) monopoly in the country, and make Canberra as a financial hub in Asia Pacific region allowing it to compete with Hong Kong and Singapore.

Ron Gould, CEO of Chi-X Global in Asia-Pacific, said: “The introduction of Chi-X platforms in other markets has attracted substantial new liquidity, narrowed bid-offer spreads, reduced explicit trading costs and helped to significantly increase overall market volumes.”

Chris Bowen, financial services minister of Australia, said that Australia’s regulator, Australian Securities and Investments Commission, will take over supervision of the Australian market this year from monopoly holder ASX , while Chi-X Australia settles in.

He added: “If Australia seriously wants to be considered as a financial centre, if we seriously want to be regarded as a global financial services hub, then the days of having a monopoly in our capital and financial markets need to come to an end,” reported wtopnews.

Reportedly, Liquidnet Australia, an Australian subsidiary of US-based institutional broker Liquidnet and AXE ECN, which is owned half by New Zealand Exchange and half by Australian companies, have also applied for license.

Chi-X Global, controlled by Japan-based financial services group Nomura, is expected to commence its operation in Australian market later this year. However, the final approval on Chi-X’s license is subject to regulatory framework.