The supermarket chain Asda, subsidiary of US giant Wal-Mart and recent (disputed) winner of the number two spot in the UK retailing sector, today (3 January) revealed plans to build a further 13 stores during 2001.

The store development investment, which includes two re-builds in Coventry and Scotland and two re-sitings in Cwmbran and Peterlee, is expected to cost the group £450m. The venture will also provide the UK with 5,000 new jobs.

Last year, Asda promised to generate 27,000 jobs by 2005, and COO Paul Mason commented on the latest plans: "This record level of investment by Wal-Mart in the UK is in line with our strategy of long-term market-share growth and good news for British customers who know that, when Wal-Mart comes to town, prices come down and stay down."

The new stores will be located in Hull, Dunstable, Bodmin, Cambridge, Leyton, Sefton, Hyde, Swindon and Dumbarton, Scotland.