CHIVAS Brothers owner Pernod Ricard has warned its annual underlying operating profit in Asia is expected to decline amid ongoing weakness in China.

The spirits company said it expected a low single digit percentage decline but it remains convinced of the medium and long term potential in Asia.

Like other drinks brands Pernod is suffering from Chinese austerity measures which crack down on luxury gift giving.

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The Ballantine's and Glenlivet owner said that stripping China out of its forecasts, the full-year profit would grow by a single digit percentage.

It highlighted growth in India, its fourth largest market, and improving demand from the travel retail sector.