The Shanghai Stock Exchange will launch individual stock options this year, its chairman, Gui Minjie, told a press conference during the annual session of China's top political advisory body.
Gui said the exchange is planning to launch equity options for blue-chip stocks this year, starting with simulated deals before proceeding to real trading, the Securities Times reported on Thursday.
Analysts said the move is aimed at providing more hedging tools for institutional investors, and to increase trading volume in China's stock market.
China launched equity index futures in 2008, and these remain the only equity derivatives currently in use.
In August last year, regulators launched a pilot program to boost margin trading, and in February they started another pilot program to enable securities lending and short-selling of blue-chip stocks.