Walmart’s Mexico and Central America unit, Walmex, has revealed plans to invest around Mex$27.1bn ($1.5bn) this year.

The investment, representing a 27% increasing from last year, is intended to drive sustainable long-term growth for the unit.

In a filing, Walmex said it will use 29% of the investment to develop new stores and clubs.

The retailer expects its new stores to account for 1.2-1.4% of its total sales growth for the year.

Walmex will earmark 45% of the investment for remodelling and maintenance, as well as expanding its omnichannel presence.

It will also work to make its stores more accessible for individuals with disabilities while increasing efficiency and sustainability.

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In addition, the retailer plans to dedicate 12% of its investments to expanding and modernising its supply chain, with the remaining 14% to go towards strategic omnichannel and technology projects.

Reuters reported that Walmex plans to launch a new health membership product and had been approved to buy a Mexico-based electronic payment provider.

The company currently has nearly 1,500 pharmacies and 500 doctor’s offices across stores in the region.

Walmex growth lead Beatriz Nunez said: “For $30 pesos, our customers can have access to unlimited remote medical service 24/7, nutrition services, ambulance in case of emergency, discounts on specialists and… a 5% discount at our pharmacies and get consultation at our doctor’s offices.

“In 2023, we want to develop health as a strong vertical; it is still in very early stages, but we know how relevant it is for our customers.”

Last month, Walmart reported that its full-year revenue for fiscal 2023 (FY23) had increased by 6.7% to $611.3bn from fiscal 2022.

Its operating income fell by 21.3% to $20.4bn in the year, while its earnings per diluted share (EPS) were $4.27, down from $4.87 a year earlier.