Canadian coffee shop chain Tim Hortons is to open 120 branches in the Middle East over the next five years.

The company said it has signed a deal with Dubai-based firm Apparel Group that would help it expand in the region. As part of the agreement, Tim Hortons will open new locations in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman.

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While chief executive Don Schroeder said that the Canadian and US markets remained Tim Hortons' top strategic priority, he added that he saw a good long-term opportunity in the Middle East.

He said: “The GCC [Gulf Co-operation Council] is an attractive market that provides significant opportunity. Our partners at Apparel have considerable knowledge of the local markets and consumer expectations.”

Tim Hortons currently operates more than 600 stores in 14 countries.