Wine exports from Argentina in the first 11 months of 2007 registered a healthy lift on a year earlier, according to recent figures.

A report from the National Institute of Statistics and Census of Argentina (INDEC) yesterday (2 January) said that exports of wine from the country between January and November hit US$496m, a rise of $111m on the same period in 2006.

Exports to the US and Brazil, two of Argentina's main markets, leapt by 40% year-on-year, the institute said. The five largest exporters were Penaflor, Esmeralda, Trivento, La Agricola and Norton.

Since 2003, wine exports have risen by an average of 30%, with wine companies in the country targeting exports of $900m by 2010.

Last year, the Corporacion Vitivinicola Argentina forecast that wine exports in 2007 would break the $400m barrier, based on a 37% climb in exports for the first seven months of the year.

Argentina is the fifth largest wine producing country in the world.