Japanese retailer Aeon has said it plans to open its first store in Taiwan next year, and has plans for up to 20 more stores on the island by the end of the decade.

A spokeswoman for the retailer said Aeon was optimistic about the Taiwan market and that it was part of the company's expansion efforts in the greater China area where it sees good growth potential.

Aeon is reported to have signed an agreement with a shopping mall developer to open its first general merchandise store in Hsinchu, northern Taiwan, in May through an investment of T$350m (US$).

Aeon already operates nine stores in Hong Kong and five in China, with 100 more outlets planned for the mainland in the next 10-15 years, reported Agence France-Presse.