Chinese coffee chain announced on Monday that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Kuwaiti food company Americana Group for a joint venture to expand its coffee chain business in the Middle East and India.

Why it matters: This is the first time the Chinese coffee chain has announced plans to expand its operations overseas.

Luckin’s expansion to the new region will extend its competition with Starbucks to more international markets.

Despite its stunning rate of growth, the company is still loss-making.

Expansion to more markets will add to financial pressures on the US-listed company.

The agreement was signed in Beijing with government officials from both sides in attendance, underscoring government support of the deal, which aligns with Beijing’s Belt and Road infrastructure development initiative.

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