The Russian Economic Development and Trade Ministry has filed an official complaint with the Belarus government for the restrictions it has placed on Russian beer exports to the country.

The government issued a directive requiring beer importers to obtain a license for each shipment from 23 August. Under the terms of the directive, a shipment's minimum limit is 100,000 litres and each licence costs $7,500, equivalent to approximately 35% of the minimum shipment's value.

It is believed that as a result of the new charge, prices of Russian imported beer in Belarus will rise by around 30% with a resulting fall in sales. The Russian Brewers Union has said that the new import charge represents a de facto restriction on beer imports which runs counter to the trade treaty between the two countries.