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Wal-Mart Plans Philippines Depot

August 8, 2000

MANILA, Philippines (AP) _ U.S. retailer Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is planning to set up a supply depot in the Philippines as part of its expansion in Asia, Trade Secretary Manuel Roxas said Tuesday.

Wal-Mart President John Menzer discussed the plan to invest in the Philippines with President Joseph Estrada, who visited the United States last week to seek investments and secure military aid from Washington, Roxas said.

``Wal-Mart plans to use the Philippines as its supply depot in Asia,″ Roxas said. He said Wal-Mart presently buys $60 million worth of merchandise from the Philippines.

Roxas said Wal-Mart, which is based in Bentonville, Ark., is talking with several prospective partners for the Philippine venture, although the company is open to investing in the country alone.

The Philippines passed a law last year opening its retail industry to foreign investors.

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