Asda CEO Andy Clarke hailed the supermarket giants plans, which will create 5,000 jobs in the UK

Asda CEO Andy Clarke hailed the supermarket giant's plans, which will create 5,000 jobs in the UK

UK supermarket chain Asda will create 5,000 jobs as part of a GBP500m (US$777m) investment in the business this year.

Asda, part of the world's biggest retailer Wal-Mart Stores, today (23 January) announced its plans, which also includes the opening of 25 stores, the refurbishment of 43 outlets and a revamp of its depot network.

Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed the announcement. He said: "The additional investment and 5,000 new jobs announced by Asda today will be a real boost for the economy and more importantly for people around Britain seeking jobs.

"I also welcome Asda's commitment to not only create jobs but invest in their staff too; offering employees the chance to join an apprenticeship scheme to gain skills which will benefit them throughout their career."

Asda said it will build a new depot in Rochdale, replace one in Scotland and upgrade another in Yorkshire as part of its growth plans.

Andy Clarke, president and CEO of Asda, said: "I am delighted to be able to start 2012 on such a positive note, doing what we do best - creating new jobs, working with new communities and bringing Asda's low prices to families who need the value we can bring. I look forward to seeing these new stores and depots open for business and welcoming new colleagues and customers to our team."

The first of the 25 new stores has already opened. Last week, Asda opened a new outlet in Tunbridge Wells. The location of 14 others has been announced, with ten more to come.