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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 November 2005, 12:42 GMT
Tesco boss 'eyes Indian market'
Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy
Tesco says Sir Terry is not going to meet any government officials
At a time when Western supermarkets are showing growing interest in opening in India, Tesco has said its boss, Sir Terry Leahy, is to visit the country.

Although Tesco stresses that Sir Terry is simply visiting the firm's service centres in Bangalore, it is said to be keen to establish a retail presence.

Like rivals Wal-Mart and Carrefour, Tesco is watching India's plans to open up the retail sector to foreign firms.

It comes as New Delhi continues general market reform and liberalisation.

Domestic squeeze

Sir Michael Arthur, the UK's high commissioner to India, has said Tesco, Wal-Mart and Carrefour are all interested in opening in India.

Despite widespread poverty, the world's second most populous nation is also enjoying strong economic growth.

Tesco's overseas operations, which stretch from Japan to the Czech Republic, now account for 20% of its turnover.

Analysts say it plans to increase its global presence to offset a lack of growth opportunities in the UK.

Earlier this month, the Office of Fair Trading was ordered to launch a fresh probe into whether the main supermarkets are overly dominant in the UK grocery market.

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