Wal-Mart China will open its first Shanghai store next year. This is likely to be the first of at least 11 stores the retailer will open in China next year, subject to restrictions on foreign retailers under WTO requirements.

The US grocery retailer currently has a turnover of $1.6bn in China and is the biggest international food and beverage retailer in the country.

Elsewhere, Wal-Mart Stores is to accelerate its expansion in Brazil with plans to open 10 stores in the south east compared with six this year and three in 2003.