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Saturday, February 16, 2013

Armenia: It will be “sad” if Georgian wine enters the Russian market

16.02.2013 (Hvino News). Avag Harutyunyan, president of Union of Armenian Wine Producers, commented whether the entry of the Georgian wine into the Russian market would damage the export of the Armenian wine, particularly given the fact that the Georgians had been putting a lot of effort recently so that Georgia had been recognized as the birthplace of wine.

Avag Harutyunyan thinks that the conditions for “the Armenian wine are not that favorable.” The chief wine producer said that situation for Armenia “will become much worse. Before the ban on the Georgian wine, at least 45-50 million bottles would enter the Russian market every year, and the Armenian ones would be 0.5-0.8 million. After the ban, the place of the Georgian wine was occupied by the Spanish, Argentinian, and Chilean wine in a matter of weeks; the rest was taken by the CIS countries, and a small part by Armenia. Our export rose by 0.6-0.8 million bottles. However, as opposed to our rivals, we occupied the relatively expensive niche of the Georgian wine, and the other CIS countries occupied the cheap one. Meanwhile, in Georgia itself, the wine factories oriented to the Russian market (30-40 million bottles) were closed, their property was sold to the Armenians, and the Georgians themselves developed the remaining potential and currently produce 10-15 million bottles of relatively good wine and export a part of it to Europe.”

Avag Harutyunyan is convinced that in case the Russian market is opened, the Georgians will reach only the half of the pre-war amount within the next 5 years. “Not more, since they don’t have the former scale, besides, the Russian market itself has changed. The former distribution network is not there anymore; the finances have been spent on other routes, the order of market entry has become more complex. However, first of all the Armenians will suffer losses because of their entry, since the Georgians with their already relatively limited resources will not enter the niche of cheap wine.”

© Hvino News

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