McDonalds to open 1,250 new China outlets

McDonalds burger Image copyright Getty Images

McDonald's is to open 1,250 new restaurants in China over the next five years as it focuses on high-growth markets to boost sales.

This would make China the fast food chain's second-largest market after the US.

McDonald's also wants to open 250 outlets in Hong Kong and South Korea in the same period.

High-growth markets including Russia accounted for nearly a quarter of McDonald's total sales in 2015.

The firm already has more than 2,200 outlets in China.

It's looking for franchisees in all three Asian locations, and plans to franchise 95% of its outlets worldwide in the long-term.

McDonald's and rival Yum Brands, the owner of KFC and Pizza Hut, have been facing increasing competition from cheaper local rivals, particularly in China, where they are trying to recover from food safety scares.

The company's chief executive Steve Easterbrook said Asia was a "significant area of opportunity" for the burger chain.

"We're in the midst of transforming our business and taking a strategic and thoughtful approach to enhance our ability to grow around the world.

"These actions build on our turnaround efforts and will advance local ownership, enable faster decision-making and achieve restaurant growth," said Mr Easterbrook.

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