UPDATE 1-Japan's Tanaka to buy Swiss precious metals refiner Metalor

* Tanaka looking beyond Japan market

* To buy Swiss company Metalor

* Wants to expand in Europe, North America (Adds detail)

TOKYO, July 12 (Reuters) - Japan’s Tanaka Holdings said it would buy Metalor Technologies International SA, a privately held Swiss precious metals refiner, to boost its business as local growth stagnates due to a falling population.

The purchase of Metalor will allow Tanaka to expand into precious metals recovery and refining in Europe, North America and Asia, the Tokyo-based company said in a statement on Tuesday.

No terms for the deal were given in the statement. Tanaka was founded in 1885 and had sales of just over 1 trillion yen ($9.7 billion) in the year through March 2016, it said.

The company also sells jewellery and gold bars, often made in the shape of fashionable characters, as well as producing electronic circuitry and other electrical parts.

Metalor, based in Neuchâtel, Switzerland, was controlled by private equity company Astorg Partners before the transaction and has capital of 37.8 million Swiss francs ($38.5 million), Tanaka said.

As well as precious metals recovery and refining, Metalor makes electrical contacts using silver alloys and plating equipment. ($1 = 103.3400 yen) ($1 = 0.9814 Swiss francs) (Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori; Writing by Aaron Sheldrick; Editing by Himani Sarkar)