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Metro Plans to Open 20 Stores in Ukraine, Investing $125 Million

June 7 (Bloomberg) -- Metro AG, Germany’s largest retailer, will invest 1 billion hryvnia ($125 million) to open about 20 new Ukrainian stores by 2013 as the economy rebounds for a second year after the deepest recession since 1994.

“With its huge population and the economy returning to strong growth again, Ukraine represents a very attractive market for modern retailing”, said Chief Executive Officer Eckhard Cordes in capital Kiev today, according to an e-mailed statement. “We are convinced that there is still great growth potential for our sales divisions in the coming years.”

The Dusseldorf, Germany-based company seeks to expand in the eastern European country, which has 46 million people and an economy that the government forecast to expand 4.7 percent this year. Gross domestic product advanced 4.2 percent in 2010.

Metro, which opened its first store in Kiev in 2003, already operates 26 stores in 18 Ukrainian cities.

To contact the reporter on this story: Daryna Krasnolutska in Kiev at dkrasnolutsk@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net;

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