Costco said that it is looking at Australia and New Zealand as potential targets for international expansion.

Chairman of the US warehouse club Jeffrey Brotman said that any decision was "six to 12 months away, or even more".

Costco currently operates about 100 stores in six markets outside the US. In the UK Costco has been hampered by the planning regime but has opened 15 depots since it entered the market in 1993, and is still aiming for 45-50.