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US fastfood sandwich chain Subway has said it plans to open a further 1,800 outlets in the UK by 2010.

Subway said the expansion plans reflected the “huge growth potential” of the sandwich franchise chain.

Subway announced the expansion plans as it opened its 200th outlet in the UK. The company opened its first UK outlet in 1996, increasing the chain to 50 outlets by March 2001.

“Although we represent just 1% of Subway’s overall worldwide store count of 20,000, that 1% is a very significant number. The UK is seen as a gateway to Europe for Subway and the chain will use its experiences here as an example of best practices and how effectively and efficiently they can be carried out in international markets,” said Kevin Graham, area development manager for Subway in the UK and Ireland.