The Ministry of Industry and Trade has issued a licence to the HCM City-based Trieu Phong Commodity Exchange (TPE), which is expected to open early next year.

The first such exchange licensed in the country, it will initially trade in steel, rubber, and coffee, according to its general director, Nguyen Duy Phuong.

It will also provide an additional financial tool for producers and traders to protect themselves against price fluctuation risks. Futures contracts, swaps, and forward trading will all be available.

The exchange will help boost the trademarks of participating members, including in foreign markets, disseminate global market information, and act as a clearing and settlement intermediate. Also on October 20 Trieu Phong Commodity Exchange inked several agreements.

Under separate contracts, the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam and Techcombank agreed to provide services like payment and loans. SME Securities Company will consult TPE in issuing shares and listing on one of Vietnam 's stock exchanges, and in developing derivatives.

It also entered into a memorandum of understanding with the Singapore-based CWT Commodities, which specialises in handling and storage of ferrous and non-ferrous metals and other commodities.

The HCM City-based Institution of Information and Business Research agreed to become a partner.

The exchange's trading system will be supplied by a British company which has provided comprehensive solutions to around 20 exchanges worldwide.

TPE has a charter capital of 150 billion VND (7.5 million USD) and the figure is expected to double in 2012.

It hopes to become a limited liability company firm in 2014./.