The Australian soft drinks group, Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd. (CCA), has said that it still expects 2002 net profit growth to be at the upper end of its 10% to 15% target range.

The company said that its performance in Australia will be boosted by the introduction of new products, including Vanilla Coke. "The earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) margins continue to remain strong," CCA said in a statement.

CCA, in which soft drinks giant, Coca-Cola Co., has around a 35% stake, said that trading in its Oceania business remained solid and sales of Vanilla Coke since its launch in September had been above expectations.

Regarding its activities outside Australia, CCA said trading conditions remained difficult in Indonesia where second half EBIT was expected to be below that of the first half. The company also said that its operations in South Korea had been adversely affected by the wet weather and typhoons in August and early-September but it was still confident of achieving more than 50% EBIT growth.

CCA operates in Australia, South Korea, Indonesia, New Zealand, Fiji and Papua New Guinea.