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(Michael Conroy)
(Michael Conroy)

Wal-Mart cutting prices in Western Canada Add to ...

Wal-Mart Canada said Friday that it plans to cut prices on staple goods in Western Canada as it ramps up a price war in that hotly contested area.

The company, a subsidiary of U.S.-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc., said the items include everything from milk and bread to eggs and butter.

The move comes as competitors such as Loblaw Cos Ltd , the country's biggest grocer, and Sobey's, a division of Empire Co Ltd , continue to expand in that area.

Loblaw has opened a number of its discount No-Frills stores over the past few years, which offer low prices on all their goods.

Wal-Mart, which has 317 stores across the country, has also opened a number of its larger-format super centres in western Canada, which offer groceries and general merchandise under one roof.

"This is probably a reaction to the increased discount competition that they [Wal-Mart]are facing," Bill Chisholm, a retail analyst at MacDougall, MacDougall and MacTier, in Toronto, said of Wal-Mart's latest move.

Last month, Wal-Mart also said it planned to spend $115-million to open a refrigerated distribution centre in Alberta later this year, which would serve a large part of Western Canada.

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