Starbucks says aims to open 500 new stores in China in 2016

Customers walk out of a Starbucks coffee store in Shanghai July 28, 2014. REUTERS/ Carlos Barria

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Starbucks Corp SBUX.O, the world's largest coffee chain, said on Tuesday it aims to open 500 stores in China this year, shrugging off a slowdown in the world's second-largest economy that has hit global retailers.

Starbucks executives have said they have not seen a systemic slowdown in China, even as the country's cooling economy has been blamed for soft results by the likes of KFC and Pizza Hut parent Yum Brands YUM.N.

The company said in a statement it aims to create 10,000 jobs in China every year through 2019 as it continues to expand in its largest market outside the United States.

Reporting By Anne Marie Roantree and Donny Kwok; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman