The Government plans to establish a multi-currency capital market as part of a push to make Hong Kong the leading investment window in Asia. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority is already developing a US dollar clearing system to be introduced in the second half of this year. The Government's next target would be to develop a euro-denominated market, Mr Tsang said. Market sources said the monetary authority would appoint HSBC today as its US dollar clearing agent. Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing is preparing to launch clearing services for US-dollar securities. 'When both these clearing systems are in place, we will be able to build a new capital market that offers local and global investors access to a full spectrum of US dollar-denominated products,' said Mr Tsang. He said US dollar clearing services would reduce the pressure on the Hong Kong dollar since the currency would no longer be used for non-domestic financial business. Andrew Fung, treasurer of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, said US dollar clearing services would encourage mainland-based H-share companies to raise US dollar funds in Hong Kong. It would also make it easier for investors to trade in seven Nasdaq companies that are due to be cross-listed on the Hong Kong stock market soon. But he said there would not be a big demand for euro clearing services and a yen-denominated capital market might be more popular. 'Trade relations between Hong Kong and Japan are closer than those between Hong Kong and Europe,' he said. Few fund managers in Hong Kong manage euro-denominated assets, with most based in London or Frankfurt. In contrast, many fund managers in Hong Kong manage yen-denominated assets. Mr Tsang said the Government would further develop the Hong Kong debt market this year. The Government also planned to link Hong Kong with more central debt clearing systems in overseas markets, he said.