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Mitsubishi Motors aims to more than double net profit over next three years

Mitsubishi Motors aims to more than double net profit over next three years

Mitsubishi Motors Corp. said Friday it plans to more than double its net profit over the next three years on surging growth in Russia, the Middle East and other emerging markets.
Mitsubishi has set a target of 50 billion yen (US$477 million; euro318 million) in net profit for the fiscal year through March 2011, compared to a profit forecast of 20 billion yen for the current fiscal year, the company said in a statement.
Mitsubishi plans to advance "to a new stage in which the company will build a base for sustainable growth," Mitsubishi said. "On the matter of earnings, the company now expects to achieve its fiscal 2007 target of solid profitability."
The Japanese automaker has been struggling to reverse plunging sales after acknowledging in 2000 it had been covering auto defects for more than two decades and announcing a string of recalls. The company suffered a combined net loss of 780 billion yen in the three years through March 2006 as a result.
The new business strategy follows reform plans that began in 2004. During the revamp period, Mitsubishi streamlined its global production operations and boosted its capital. Most recently, the company decided to shut an auto plant in Australia by the end of March.
The car maker aims to boost global sales 6 percent to 1.42 million vehicles in the year ending March 31, 2011, from 1.34 million expected this year, hoping to ride on growth from Russia, the Ukraine, the Middle East and other rapidly growing markets, it said.
Under the midterm plan, Mitsubishi plans to focus on minicars and small cars, medium-sized cars and sports utility vehicles, or SUVs, while making effort to develop clean diesel engines and high-efficiency transmission.