According to JEIDA (Japan Electronic Industry Development Association) Japanese shipments of digital camera almost doubled to 5.82 million over the past year. This number rose to 82% in the year to March, 31. By value shipments rose 72% from a year earlier to 255.88 billion Yen ($2.34 billion). These rises were attributed to new 2 and 3 megapixel models.

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Japan 99/00 digital still camera shipments up 82%

TOKYO, May 16 (Reuters) - Japanese shipments of digital still cameras almost doubled to 5.82 million over the past year, the Japan Electronic Industry Development Association (JEIDA) said on Tuesday.

The number shipped rose 82 percent in the year to March 31, it said. By value, shipments rose 72 percent from a year earlier to 255.88 billion yen ($2.34 billion).

JEIDA attributed the steep rise to the launch of over 2 mega-pixel models and 3 mega-pixel models, while a sharp increase in sales of personal computers for Internet access and e-mail also helped boosted demand.

Exports of digital still cameras rose 107 percent to 4.13 million units, worth 177.73 billion yen, up 83 percent from a year earlier. Domestic shipments rose 56 percent to 1.68 million units, worth 78.15 billion yen, up 51 percent from a year earlier, it said.

The relatively higher value of domestic shipments reflected strong demand for high-pixel and high-function models, it said.

The figures are based on a survey of 20 Japanese digital still camera makers including the three major makers -- Fuji Photo Film , Canon Inc and Olympus Optical Co Ltd .

In midafternoon trading, Fuji Photo's shares were up 20 yen or 0.47 percent at 4,240 yen, Canon's shares were up 50 yen or 1.08 percent at 4,700 yen, and Olympus Optical's shares were up 33 yen or 1.75 percent at 1,923 yen.