Coca-Cola Enterprises said that the economy in Western Europe has “become a little better”

Coca-Cola Enterprises said that the economy in Western Europe has “become a little better”

Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) has said that Western Europe's economic situation is "improving slightly", despite soaring commodity costs, according to reports.

Speaking to Dow Jones yesterday (14 March), CCE's chairman and CEO, John Brock, said that, despite a "challenging" consumer outlook for manufacturers, the economy in the region has "become a little better".

The Coca-Cola marketer, distributor, producer and bottler, which sold its North American business to The Coca-Cola Co last year, told the news service that it has benefited from hedging its exposure to a number of raw materials, including sweeteners and metals, to limit the impact of market price fluctuations.

Speaking at the CAGNY investment conference in Florida last month, Brock told attendees that the company only sees a 3% increase in its commodity costs, thanks to hedges, diversity of products purchased, and product mix.

"Going forward, we have a solid and strong balance sheet and significantly less debt, strong cash flow and a very strong focus on creating value for every stakeholder in the company," the CEO said at the conference.