A Georgian government minister has called for a ban on Russian beer in retaliation for Russia's blockade on shipments of wine from Georgia.
"I personally would welcome a decision to bar Russian beer from the Georgian market," Defence Minister Irakli Okruashvili told local reporters yesterday (2 May). "This would bring great advantage to Georgian companies whose production isn't reaching Russia."

However, the Georgian government said it would only consider a ban on beer from Russia if harmful ingredients were found.

Imports of wine from Georgia and neighbouring Moldova were banned in late-March on the grounds that they contained pesticides and were of poor quality. Georgia has argued that the ban is politically motivated.

Last week, Russia stepped up its trade dispute with Georgia with a threat to ban mineral water imports from its neighbour, according to local reports.

Gennady Onishchenko, Russia's chief health inspector, proposed to ban imports of Borjomi, Nabeglavi and other Georgian mineral waters if they did not comply with Russian regulations.