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Exports of cars, trucks and buses rose 6.8 percent in October from a year before to 402,608 vehicles, up for the 10th straight month, the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association said Wednesday.

Exports of cars increased 5.2 percent, trucks rose 17.5 percent and buses jumped 15 percent.

Combined exports for all of 2002 is expected rise for the first time in two years, even though shipments to the United States and Europe are not strong due to the sluggishness of their economies, an association official said.

By destination, exports to Asia soared 66.6 percent, including a five-fold jump in China-bound shipments, partly due to brisk demand for Japanese trucks in the region.

Exports to the U.S. and Europe increased marginally.

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