Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. said Wednesday that its group net balance returned to the black in fiscal 2001, chiefly due to a reduction in material costs and a weakened yen.

Its group net profits in the year to March 31 came to 26.45 billion yen, marking a turnaround from the previous year’s losses of 20.35 billion yen, according to the manufacturer of power-generation systems and aerospace vehicles.

Its consolidated pretax profits increased 7.5 percent to 67.99 billion yen on sales of 2.86 trillion yen, down 5.9 percent.

Mitsubishi Heavy said its corporate fortunes received a boost from orders for liquefied natural gas plants and F-2 support jet fighters.

It added, however, that its energy and shipbuilding divisions took hits from the recession, the absence of orders for nuclear power plants, and fewer orders for gas turbines for power generation in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

A weakened yen provided the firm with windfall foreign exchange gains.

Its per-share net profit came to 7.84 yen, marking a sharp turnaround from the previous period’s loss of 6.03 yen.

The company said it will pay a full-year per-share dividend of 4 yen, mirroring the previous fiscal year.

For fiscal 2002, the company expects its net profits to come in at 45 billion yen and its pretax profits to come to 80 billion yen on projected sales of 2.63 trillion yen.

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