Politicians in Ukraine have reportedly called for tighter controls on wine sold in the country after claims from Moscow that Moldovan wine was finding its way into Russia via the former Soviet republic.

A report from the Itar-Tass news agency yesterday (17 October) said the Ukrainian parliament had endorsed a draft bill to tighten controls on wine sold in the country.

"As much as 75% of wine sold in Ukraine is compote or powder wine, that is low-quality wine," Vasily Tsushko, leader of Ukraine's Socialist Party and author of the bill, was quoted as saying in the report.

"Russia has already banned the import of such low quality wine from Moldova and Georgia and now considers Ukraine. Meanwhile, we are indiscriminate, unlike Russia. Therefore, it is necessary to adopt a bill to fight bootlegging," Tsushko added.

"Unless we adopt such a bill, we will encourage counterfeiters from other countries, the more so, as Russia now raises the question of the quality of Ukrainian wine."

Earlier this week, Russia's chief sanitary inspector Gennady Onishchenko claimed that Moldovan wine was reaching Russia via Ukraine and called for tighter controls on imports from the country.

Russia began banning wine imports from Moldova in March amid claims shipments did not meet quality standards.

However, the Moldovan government has insisted that Russia's ban on wine imports from the country is politically motivated and has nothing to do with the quality of its wine.