* Sees FY op profit ex restructuring costs below 2012 level
* Previously forecast figure at or slightly below last year
* Q3 sales 752 mln euros vs f‘cast 778 million
* Op profit excluding one-offs 35 million (Adds details on outlook, background)
HELSINKI, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Cargo handling equipment maker Cargotec cut its full-year profit forecast after a fall in merchant ship deliveries, the latest Finnish industrial company to warn of the impact of a prolonged downturn in Europe’s economy.
Cargotec said on Tuesday it expected full-year operating profit excluding restructuring costs to fall short of what it achieved in 2012. It previously forecast a figure at or slightly below last year’s level.
Preliminary results showed third-quarter sales of 752 million euros ($1 billion) and operating profit, excluding one-off items, of 35 million. Analysts had expected sales of 778 million euros, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Cargotec said second-half sales and operating profit at MacGregor, a unit which makes hatch covers and cranes for ships, would likely be weaker than expected because of weak merchant ship sales.
The company had already lowered its outlook on MacGregor sales in July, saying customers were deferring orders.
The warning comes a day after Finnish crane maker Konecranes cut its full-year forecast after a 10 percent fall in third-quarter orders.
Cargotec has been struggling to turn around its business for the past few years as global economic uncertainty has made its customers, such as shipping companies and port operators, hesitant about new investments.
Full quarterly results are due to be announced on Oct. 24. ($1 = 0.7361 euros) (Reporting by Ritsuko Ando; Editing by Mark Potter and David Holmes)