The Indian government is likely to grant the wine segment industry status in the next few months, according to local press reports.

The decision, when it materialises, comes after persistent pressure from the wine business to grant it separate industry status.

A senior government official was quoted in the Financial Express as saying: "There has been an ongoing demand from the wine manufactures to grant their sector an industry status. Now with the opening up of Quantitive Restrictions (QRs) and the proposed import of wines into the country, the government is planning to grant the wine sector industry status."

He added that the granting of industry status had become essential for the growth of the sector.

The wine sector in India has been hampered by the fact that the government equates it with the spirits industry. Wine therefore suffers from the same punitive tax regime and legislation as its higher alcohol cousin.