According to figures released this week by the Renaissance Capital investment group, the Russian beer market is set to expand by 14% in 2002 compared to last year.

In its previous assessment Renaissance predicted a 10% beer market growth in Russia this year. However it said: "The warmer weather this year, the continuing trend of hard liquor substitution by beer, and the growing disposable income of the Russian population, suggest faster growth of the sector than previously assumed. We have increased our forecast for beer sector growth to 14% in 2002 /from 10% before/," Renaissance said.

The report said that per capita beer consumption in Russia is expected to reach 71.0 liters in 2006-up from 42.6 liters in 2001.