Rospotrebnadzor head says Russian market not to be immediately open for Moldovan wines

The Russian sanitary service (Rospotrebnadzor) will decide, after a group of its experts return to Moscow on 11 October following an inspection visit to Chisinau, on what measures Moldova is to take, yet not also on the opening of the Russian market for the Moldovan wines, Rospotrebnadzor head Gennady Onishchenko has told Interfax, cited by MOLDPRES.

The chief state sanitary doctor of Russia added that it was not about a decision on the access of Moldovan alcoholic beverages to the Russian market, but on the next steps to be taken for their return to the Russian market.

"The experts had concrete goals. Their return is scheduled for Friday, 11 October. Afterwards, a decision may be approved on the next steps in this respect. Not about access, but on the next steps”, said Onishchenko.

Earlier, the head of Rospotrebnadzor has said that sending a Russian inspection to Moldova was a step forward towards the implementation of the agreements reached with the Agriculture Ministry.

Rospotrebnadzor experts inspected the National Centre for Wine Quality Checking on 10 October. They abstained from making assessments or statements on the tests’ results. The Russian sanitary inspection expressed reservations about the centre’s activity, accredited by Rospotrebnadzor during last year, especially because “ under a protocol of the state enterprise “National Centre for Quality Testing of Alcoholic Beverages,” only 0.43 per cent of the overall exports have been delivered to the Russian market since early 2013”.

The authority in charge of monitoring the situation in terms of the alcoholic products, criticised the Moldovan Agriculture Ministry for the failure to take steps for creating a national system of production quality control, that is one of the main conditions for resuming Moldovan wine exports to the Russian market. Rospotrebnadzor insists on the creation of a state system for checking the goods’ quality, while the Agriculture Ministry gave more powers to the private sector.

The supplies of Moldovan alcoholic beverages to the Russian market were fully stopped under an order by the head of the Russian sanitary inspection Rospotrebnadzor, Gennady Onishchenko, from 10 September.

The Moldovan wines could return to the Russian market, yet there is a risk that not for a long period, said Onishchenko on 4 October. He hinted that, after the Free Trade Agreement with the European Union is initialled in November, the export of alcoholic beverages to the Russian market would be brought “to the scratch”, and the issue of deliveries would be re-examined.