HONG KONG -- Wal-Mart Stores is considering entering the Chinese market, according to S. Robson Walton, chairman.

Walton, who was in the northern Chinese port city of Tianjin last week, told reporters he was interested in China's huge market potential and was seeking retail investment possibilities.

Chinese sources reported Walton inspected several large commercial centers in the city and talked with local officials.

Tianjin, one of the leading trade and commercial centers in the region and one of the few cities that allows foreign investment in commerce and retail sales, has become popular among foreign investors. Last year, the Isetan company of Japan leased and opened a large shopping center, which includes textile and apparel outlets.

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