Tesco is to make its Indian debut by spending £60m over two years developing a wholesale cash and carry business in India.

The supermarket giant is to launch a business designed at offering both food and non-food products to small retailers, restaurants, kirana stores (convenience stores) and other business owners.

Tesco has also entered into a franchise agreement with Tata Group, aimed at helping Tata’s retail arm Trent develop its Star Bazaar hypermarket business.

The agreement sees Tesco receive an undisclosed fee in return for its ‘extensive retail expertise’ and ‘technical capability’.

Trent has four hypermarkets in India but plans to grow by a further 50 stores within five years.

Sir Terry Leahy, CEO of Tesco, said: ‘[This] complements our entries into China and the United States, giving us access to another of the most important economies in the world.’