Wine exports from Argentina have soared in the first four months of this year, according to recent figures.

In a report by private consultancy IES, release yesterday (12 June), exports were shown to have leapt by 37% by volume, but by only 28% in value between January and April on the corresponding period a year earlier. A total of 68,509 litres of wine was sold abroad, producing a value of US$99.2m, the consultancy said.

The reason IES gave for the disparity between volume and value was due to the "significant increase of shipments of wine in bulk, which reduced the median prices received."

Argentina is well-poised to take advantage of currency appreciation in competing countries like Chile, the firm said.

"In the ongoing year, we expect wine exports to be between 20% and 25% above those of 2005, with a value of US$350m," the company forecast.

The main markets for Argentina, the world's fifth-largest wine producer, are the US, the UK, Canada and the Scandinavian countries.