Wal-Mart could be planning to acquire the Chinese hypermarket chain Trust-Mart for $1bn (£800m).

Reports suggest that the US retail giant is close to securing a deal to acquire Trust-Mart, which is China's second-largest hypermarket group with 100 stores.

The deal would make Wal-Mart the largest foreign retailer in the country - it already operates more than 65 stores there. Wal-Mart declined to comment.

Meanwhile, in Thailand, French retailer Carrefour has called for agreement among international retailers to stop opening smaller stores in the country.

Retailers including Tesco and Carrefour are in consultation with the Thai government over their expansion plans but Carrefour has said that, “small outlets directly compete against local retailers, which have forced them out of business”.

A group of shop owners are planning to demonstrate against Tesco opening stores “in outlying areas where local shops have been hurt”.