French retailing giant Auchan will be finalising an investment deal later this week to open two hypermarkets in Moscow during 2002.

The deal with the Property Minister for the Moscow region is further evidence of the company’s plan to focus on Russia for expansion. Full details will be revealed during the second half of this month.

The financial details concerning the costs of the hypermarket deal have not been released, but it is expected that Auchan will finance the project itself. The company, which posts annual revenues of around US$22.7bn, controls over 700 stores in 12 countries.