Like-for-like profit from operations at cigarette maker British American Tobacco increased by 8% from £1.124bn to £1.211bn in the half-year to end June 30.

The group also said that profit from four of five regions was up 14%, although conditions in Canada and Japan remained very difficult.

BAT also posted adjusted earnings per share of 41.65 pence compared with 33.87 pence last year, beating analysts' forecasts of 38-40.3 pence.