• Kyodo

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Canon Inc. said Wednesday its group net profit for this business year is now projected to fall by 36.7 percent from a year earlier, citing weakening demand for cameras in the Chinese market.

Canon slashed its group net profit forecast for the year through December to ¥160 billion ($1.48 billion), compared with ¥200 billion it projected in April, noting also a slowing economy in Europe, amid concerns over a prolonged trade war between China and the United States.

Canon said its consolidated operating profit is expected to fall 37.3 percent from a year before to ¥215 billion, down from the previous estimate of ¥274 billion. Its projected sales are ¥3.75 trillion, down from ¥3.85 trillion.

The company said it is suffering from a market contraction in single-lens reflex cameras and the yen’s advance against the euro, despite robust sales of new medical equipment in the U.S. market.

Asked about the possibility of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a specific deal with the bloc after Boris Johnson on Tuesday won the Conservative Party leadership contest to become the new prime minister, Executive Vice President Toshizo Tanaka said the company will consider whether to transfer its European headquarters from the country.

But Tanaka, speaking at a news conference in Tokyo, suggested at the same time that it all depends on how things develop after Brexit.

In the first half through June, Canon’s group net profit plunged 51.2 percent to ¥65.83 billion from a year earlier. Consolidated operating profit sank 52.3 percent to ¥83.55 billion on sales of ¥1.77 trillion, down 10.0 percent.

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