Tesco Ireland is to create 522 jobs in new stores between now and next summer, as part of a €120m investment. The company has already created 235 positions in new stores in the last four months.

Most of the new jobs will be based in Dublin and Co Kildare. The new stores to open over the next couple of months are in Cabra (150) and Rush (80) in Dublin and Kildare (120). A replacement store is also underway in Roscrea, Co Tipperary which was originally planned for last year. 60 jobs will be based here.

Seven new Tesco Express stores in Dublin and Kildare, creating 16 jobs each, will also be opened this year.

The company opened new shops in Balbriggan, Portlaoise and Celbridge earlier this year, creating 235 jobs.

Tesco also estimates 548 building jobs will be created during the expansion drive.

'This latest investment in new and improved Tesco stores once again highlights our commitment to Ireland,' commented Tesco Ireland's chief executive Tony Keohane.

Small shops claim move will hit jobs

The organisation representing 4,000 small shops says today's expansion announcement by Tesco will lead to job displacement from local communities.

Tara Buckley of RGDATA says jobs announcements by large retailers do not amount to newly created jobs but actually cut jobs in existing businesses.

She criticised Tesco's model of opening large stores on the edges of towns, saying that rather than create competition in the market, they close down all the competition.

Ms Buckley also says independent retailers employ far more people in proportion to their market share compared with Tesco. She says independents currently employ up to 90,000 people and have 38% of the retail grocery market, while Tesco employs between 11,000 and 13,000 while holding 27% of the market.