The US-based drinks group, Central European Distribution Corp., a distributor of beers and spirits in Central Europe, has said that its 2003 earnings will be higher than it first forecast, on the back of benefits from lower rental costs and the closure of some of its depots in Poland.

The company has raised its 2003 guidance from between US$2.00 and US$2.05 per share to between US$2.15 and US$2.20 per share.

"We have been able to renegotiate a 30% rental decrease for our main distribution facility in Warsaw, which will start from May 1 of this year," said the company's CEO, William Carey.