Tesco has delivered an upbeat message on the enduring potential of the world’s emerging retail markets, despite the impact of the global recession.

Philip Clarke, Tesco’s international director, insisted markets like China still offer opportunities for retailers to invest, even if the downturn has slowed economic growth.

“The window of opportunity is not closing,” Clarke told the World Retail Congress in Barcelona on Friday (8 May). “There is a hell of a lot of growth to go for.”

Clarke’s comments came after Spar International, the Netherlands-based global retailer, announced plans to treble the number of its stores in China.

In the year to 28 February, Tesco’s international sales rose by 13.3% at constant currencies, as the company saw its growth in Asia accelerate on the back of the Homever acquisition in South Korea.

More to come….