Most Georgians approve of planned resumption of wine exports to Russia – poll

Tblisi, Georgia, File Photo with Building with Tower on Hillside and City Buildings in Valley in Distance

(Interfax – TBILISI, April 15, 2013) A vast majority of Georgians approve of the government’s plan to resume exports of wine, mineral water and agricultural produce to Russia, an opinion poll suggests.

Current Georgian-Russian talks on the resumption of such exports were acceptable to 84% of respondents and unacceptable to only 3% of respondents in a recent survey by the U.S. National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI), with 11% being undecided and 2% refusing to answer.

Asked whether they liked current Georgian-Russian relations, 49% answered in the negative, 38% answered in the positive, 12% were undecided, and 1% refused to answer.

The Georgian prime minister’s appointment of a special envoy for relations with Russia was acceptable to 78% of respondents and unacceptable to 5%, 16% being undecided, and the rest refusing to answer.

NDI questioned 3,103 people in the nationwide poll, held from March 13 to March 27. The institute put the margin of error at 2.5%.

Russia suspended wine, mineral water and farm produce imports from Georgia in 2006, claiming they failed to meet Russian quality standards, though many experts saw politics behind the move. Diplomatic relations between the two countries were severed after their war of August 2008.