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Tesco sees first Irish sales boost for two years

The announcement is a turnaround after months of declining sales figures.

Image: Tim Ireland/PA Wire/Press Association Images

TESCO HAS REPORTED its first increase in Irish sales since 2010.

Like-for-like sales at the supermarket giant – which discount the impact of new stores opening – grew by 0.4 per cent in the first three months of 2012.

They had fallen by 0.7 per cent in the last three months of 2011, and for several quarters previously. In a statement the retailer described the figures as an “improved performance”.

However, the retailer reported a fall in UK sales, which decreased by 1.1 per cent. The drop was 1.5 per cent when VAT and petrol were excluded.

When global markets were factored in Tesco’s sales increased overall by 2.2 per cent, with nine per cent growth in Asia and a 19.7 per cent boost in the US.

Tesco’s chief executive Philip Clarke said the company had “performed robustly” despite what he described as “subdued consumer confidence.” He added:

Against the backdrop of continuing uncertainty in the Eurozone, it is pleasing to see that our businesses have largely sustained their performance.

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The company has hired 4,300 new staff and revamped 100 stores in the UK since the beginning of the year.

Read: Grocery sales fall by 0.2 per cent>

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Michael Freeman

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