A SENIOR Hong Kong banker expects the yuan to be fully convertible before 1997 as part of China's bid to join the World Trade Organisation (WTO). David Li Kwok-po, the deputy chairman and chief executive of Bank of East Asia, said a fully convertible currency was one of the requirements for China to be a member of WTO. Speaking at the American Chamber of Commerce's China business conference, Mr Li said Hong Kong would play a greater role in mobilising capital for China after 1997 by expanding the country's capacity to attract global funds. 'Hong Kong will offer China greater access to the world's capital markets and promote China and Chinese enterprises to the world,' he said. He said Hong Kong authorities had moved to strengthen and deepen financial markets, including the capital and debt markets. 'The ability of the financial sector of Hong Kong to serve global demand for China-related debt will be further enhanced when Hong Kong and China established a real-time link between their respective payment and settlement systems.' He said Hong Kong aimed to be the exchange of choice for mainland companies seeking an overseas listing.