Average daily sales of the South China Morning Post during the second half of last year rose to 101,782 copies, figures released yesterday by the Hong Kong Audit Bureau of Circulation show. This is a daily rise of 5,393 copies - or 5.6 per cent - on the sales figure for the comparable period in 2003 of 96,389 copies. Sales of the Sunday Morning Post surged by 8.3 per cent between July 1 and December 31, to a weekly average of 82,208 copies - an increase of 6,312 copies over the same period in 2003. SCMP Group editor-in-chief David Armstrong said the strong sales performances of both newspapers reflected growth in the Hong Kong economy and greater reader acceptance of continued improvements in the newspapers. 'We continue to work to ensure our content is timely, accurate, relevant and reliable,' he said. 'We have also worked to improve the design of the papers, to enhance the reader's experience. 'I am pleased that we are gaining the trust of an increasing number of readers.'