Canon sold 11% more digital cameras in the first three months of 2010 than in the same period last year.

?Sales volumes of? new digital SLR cameras such as the competitively priced EOS 500D and new EOS 550D, along with the EOS 5D Mark II and EOS 7D advanced-amateur models, achieved healthy growth,? reports Canon.

Meanwhile, sales of new Ixus and PowerShot-series compact cameras boosted sales, especially in emerging markets.

Canon predicts ?solid growth? in DSLRs sales and demand for compacts to ?expand gradually? in response to the ?economic turnaround?.

The figures are contained in Canon?s consolidated results for the quarter ended 31 March 2010, released yesterday, which shows a tripling of the group?s net profit.

Last week Canon?s marketing arm reported a 0.2% rise in group sales, signalling a ‘moderate recovery’ in the Japanese economy, said the firm.

Canon Marketing Japan Inc forecast that the Japanese economy will make a mild recovery but that the situation remains ?unclear?.