Wal-Mart’s Chinese Purchases Hold at $9 billion

Though the cost of Chinese goods have increased as a result of the ’s rise against the U.S. dollar, U.S. mega-retailer said its purchases of Chinese-made shoes, toys, and other goods would hold steady this year at $9 billion. The AP report, hosted at CNNMoney.com, also says the retailer is expanding its operations within China – it opened 30 stores last year, bringing its mainland total to 102.

Wal-Mart’s president for China, Ed Chan, declined to give sales forecasts or the number of new stores that will open in . But they said China sales were growing faster than the 18% rate for the rest of Wal-Mart’s non-U.S. operations.

Wal-Mart officials say they are maintaining good relations with the Chinese , despite the company’s efforts to quell unionizing efforts by the government-sanctioned All-China Federation of in 2006.

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