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French group Vinci keeps outlook as H1 profit rises

PARIS, July 31 (Reuters) - French construction group Vinci kept its forecasts for higher annual earnings and revenues as it reported an increase in first-half profits, helped by a solid performance at its airports concessions business and its contracting activities.

Vinci, which is Europe's biggest construction and concessions company, said first-half operating profit rose 9.1% to 2.3 billion euros ($2.6 billion), while revenues increased 10% to 21.7 billion.

Vinci has been expanding into faster-growing and more profitable concessions such as airports and motorways, as well as engineering projects for the energy industry, in order to counter weakness elsewhere in the construction sector.

($1 = 0.8964 euros) (Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)