The Japanese brewer Asahi Breweries has seen its net profit in the first half of the year fall 23% to ¥8.2 billion (US$66.7m). Tax increases on low-malt beer have been blamed for a fall in sales. The company's operating profit fell 20.2% to ¥21.6 billion. Given the results and the general poor outlook of the hyper-competitive Japanese beer market, Asahi cut its full year outlook to net profit of ¥21 billion, and an operating profit of ¥66 billion. Originally it had forecast net profit of ¥26 billion, and an operating profit of ¥73 billion.