Russian authorities have closed down the website operated by vodka company, Veda-Sistema, which produces the Matrix and Waltz-Boston brands, as it seeks to clamp down on internet advertising of vodka.

The St Petersburg office of Russia's anti-monopolies authority ordered the closure of the Veda-Sistema website. However, a Veda-Sistema spokesman, quoted in the Russian newspaper, Vedomosti, said that the decision was not final and the company was hoping to be authorised to retain the site for use by trade customers in Russia and abroad.

Natalia Ploshkina, an official with the anti-monopolies department, said that liquor advertising in Russia was prohibited other than at the point of sale and that consequently internet advertising is against the law.

Another vodka company, Livia, voluntarily closed down its website earlier this month.