Japan?s production of digital SLRs with interchangeable lenses will rise by 23.4% this year, meaning that 4.68m kits will be shipped from factories, according to new trade figures.

Demand in Europe and other areas is expected to outstrip the market in Japan, according to statistics released by the Tokyo-based Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA).

Exports of DSLR/lens kits from Japan are forecast to shoot up by 23.7% to around 4.01M units in 2006 compared to 2005.

Meanwhile, production of interchangeable lenses is predicted to grow by 11.4% to around 7.85m units.

However, Japan?s production of film cameras is expected to plummet to 3.33m units ? 38% fewer cameras than were made last year.