UK-based baby products retailer Mothercare has reported a 10.8% rise in international retail sales during the first half (H1) of 2012-13

The retailer’s worldwide network sales increased 2.1% in the first half of the year, while group sales declined 5.9%.

Asia Pacific and the Middle East & Africa continue to perform strongly while Europe remains weaker, particularly across the company’s Eurozone markets.

However, Eastern European markets and Turkey continue to deliver strong growth in line with expectations.

The company’s international like-for-like sales up 4.4% while UK like-for-like sales performance improved, with decline reduced to 3.4%, from 7% in the first half of 2011.

Revenue’s for the 28 weeks to 13 October 2012 reported an decrease of 5.9% to $388.4m, compared to $412.9 in the first of the 2011.

During the half-year, Mothercare shut 31 shops, including 25 Early Learning Centre outlets.

Commenting of the results Mothercare chief executive Simon Calver said the figures show early signs of progress despite the challenging trading conditions in the UK and the Eurozone

"International profits have grown by 20%, while the like-for-like sales trend in the UK has improved and losses have reduced, " Calver added.

Calver plans to shut 50 during the full-year as Mothercare heads towards a target of 200 shops in the UK.

Mothercare is an international mother and baby retailer, and currently opeartes 1,378 stores worldwide of which 420 are in Europe, 339 in Asia Pacific, 312 in the Middle East & Africa, 280 in the UK and 27 in Latin America.