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China, Hong Kong confirm dominance of Bordeaux

Bordeaux last week reported a strong surge in overseas sales – with China and Hong Kong confirming absolute dominance of the region's export market.

Between them China and Hong Kong account for around 60% of the region’s total export market.

China has overtaken Germany to become the world’s largest importer of Bordeaux wine, with its imports increasing over 85% to 314,000 hectolitres, CIVB figures show.

By value, China comes in third, at €231m, behind the United Kingdom at €274m and Hong Kong at €326m.

This puts China and Hong Kong together at €557m – around 60% in value of the rest of the top 10 export markets combined.

The CIVB figures also show two thirds of gains, across all exports including to China, are in wines sold for less than €4.5 per bottle.

Overall Bordeaux exports from June 2010 to June 2011 were up 23% in volume, and 34% in value – although overall sales – including France – were down 2% to 196m bottles.

‘Sales have increased more over the past six months than over the entire proceeding year,’ CIVB director Georges Haushalter told Decanter.com. ‘But clearly the 2008 financial crisis has had a profound effect.’

Exports to Europe showed a healthy rise of 9% in volume and 10% in value, and the United States also regained some market with a 22% rise in volume and 7% rise in value.

Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux

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