TBILISI, DFWatch–The National Wine Agency of Georgia does not plan to advertise Georgian wine at the upcoming Sochi Winter Olympics, but it is still unknown whether private companies will do it on their own initiative.

On Tuesday, Russian media reported that Georgia plans to advertise wine at the Olympics, but the Georgian National Wine Agency rejected this in a statement.

The statement says that the agency doesn’t plan any advertising during the Olympics.

“However, we do not exclude initiatives from the private sector,” Levan Davitashvili, head of the agency, explains.

Georgian wine was the first product that was banned by Russia in 2006, justified by claims that it had low quality, but it was seen by some as retribution against Georgia for arresting four Russian diplomats and accusing them of being spies.

After the change of government in 2012, the new government started talks with Russia to reopen export of Georgian products, including wine.
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According to Davitashvili, there is a growing interest in Georgian on the international markets, including the Russian market.

“There are no hindrance factors for Georgian companies to export their product. The important thing is to have quality product,” Davitashvili continues saying.

According to the agency, 47 million bottles of wine was exported to 46 countries in 2013. 22 million bottles were exported to Russia. The alcohol export was valued at USD 231 829 540 in 2013, which is 42 percent more than in 2012.

Georgian wine was also presented at the EU summit in Vilnius in November, 2013.