Japan Fastest Growing Market for Geo Wine Exports

The first half of 2018 saw a 21% increase in wine exports over the first half of 2017. From January-June, 2018, 38.2 million bottles of wine were exported to 48 different countries. Exports for the year so far total USD 90.3 million.

The increase can be mostly explained by the increasingly appetites in new markets for Georgian wine – in particular, Japan.

The largest markets for export during the period were Russia, (24 million bottles), followed by Ukraine (4.2 million bottles), China (3 million bottles), Kazakhstan (1.7 million bottles) and Poland (1.6 million bottles). The fastest growing markets, however, are Japan, which saw a 200% increase between January and June, Czech Republic (134%), Kyrgyzstan (81%), South Korea (78%), The Netherlands (68%), and the United Kingdom (67%).

In the last year, Japan has hosted several events featuring Georgian wines, including a Georgian wine masterclass in February, attended by the Georgia’s Ambassador to Japan, Levan Tsintsadze, and Georgian sumo wrestler Levan Gorgadze (Tochinoshin), who recently won Japan’s historic Emperor’s Cup. In March, seven Georgian wines won awards at the 2018 Sakura competition, which is an annual event judged exclusively by female Japanese wine specialists. Georgian wines were awarded double gold, gold and silver medals after five days of tastings, competing against more than 4,000 wines from 33 different countries.

Today, the Georgian National Wine Agency announced that the Japanese government is simplifying import procedures for Georgian wines. The expectation is that simpler customs requirements will help reduce the cost of Georgian wine in Japan.

According to a statement from the Georgian National Wine Agency, “The National Wine Agency applied to the Embassy of Georgia in Japan to solve the problem. The embassy requested a list of laboratories from Georgia which would be appropriate to register with the Japanese side. Afterwards, the diplomatic service of Japan held a consultation with the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in order to officially register the laboratories provided by the Georgian side in all relevant Japanese organizations and structures”, the agency said.


By Samantha Guthrie

Photo: HKTDC Research

09 July 2018 15:38