Saturday, September 22, 2018

Georgian wine exports to China declined due to excess supplies and high prices

22.09.2018. According to SakStat, in January-August 2018, wine in the amount of  $ 11.7 million was exported to China, while in the same period of 2017 – wine exports totaled $ 13.6 million. Obviously, Georgia sees a significant decline in exports. Zurab Ramazashvili, Director of Telavi Wine Cellar, says that exports to China have decreased, but too little time have passed to make far-reaching conclusions about the reasons.

"Our partners will give explanations in the coming months, but not earlier. There can be many reasons, including claims to quality, but it is more likely that the main problem is price," he  says.
Ramazashvili adds that despite this, the company will continue to operate on the Chinese market, and will try to eliminate the problems that caused the decline in exports as soon as possible.

Vaziani company’s sales  in  China have also decreased. According to its founder Irakli Iashvili, in comparison with 2017 the sales fell by 20-25%. "Our Chinese partners sell Georgian wine in an expensive segment that reduced the demand and the process raises concerns," he notes. In Iashvili’s words, it is difficult to specify  the exact reasons for what is happening, but most likely this is due to the stock growth and quality.

The state has already begun to fight against falsifications, but it should be more active.

The company Badagoni has a different opinion in this regard. In the words of the company CEO Gia Shengelia, the company has  increased export volumes to China. "By the end of the year, we will export another 250,000 bottles to China," he explains.

The expert at the National Wine Agency Irakli Cholobargia believes that the main reason for export cuts to China is the price. "The Chinese market is very competitive, and Georgian producers raised prices for certain wines that most likely reduced exports. Last year, Georgian grapes were very expensive that increased the cost of wine, and producers have no choice but to increase prices," he says.

In January-August 2018, Georgia exported 52.7 million bottles of wine to 52 countries which is 16% more than in the same period in 2017. Exports amounted to $ 125,5 million which is 25% more than in January-August 2017.

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