Romania to significantly increase Moldovan wine import following Russian embargo

Romanian President Traian Basescu promised his Republic of Moldova counterpart Nicolae Timofti that Romania will significantly increase the import of Moldovan wines and farm produce, following the embargo set by the Russian Federation.

The two heads of state had a phone call, during which Basescu said Romania was ready to increase the imports of wine and farm produce, Timofti's spokesman Vlad Turcanu told a press briefing.

'It is a political message that the two presidents send the governments. The next step is that all the technical issues are set by the governments and by the commercial companies involved in the import and export activities', Turcanu said.

'Romania's imports of wines and agricultural produce will substantially increase as a result of the political will expressed by the President of Romania Traian Basescu', he added.

The spokesman announced that the Russian embargo was also discussed by Timofti with the new European Union ambassador in Chisinau, Pirkka Tapiola on Wednesday.

'The European ambassador said that any political or economic pressure put on the Eastern Partnership member states because of their commitments to the EU is unacceptable', Turcanu stressed.

The Moldovan president on Wednesday called the embargo on the country's wine production announced by Russia ‘an unfriendly act'.

The Russian consumer protection service announced it was stopping the import of wine produce from the Republic of Moldova invoking its quality and the presence of harmful substances.

In 2012, the Republic of Moldova shipped 210 million dollars worth of wine, with 29 percent of it (more than 60 million dollars) having been bound to the Russian market, according to figures offered by the National Bank. Other important markets for the Moldovan wine products include Belarus (22 percent of the total) and Ukraine (14 percent). Romania imported wine totaling 4.26 million dollars from Moldova in 2012, accounting for 2 percent of the Moldovan shipments.

Adapted from Agerpres