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Kyrgyzstan Review, 10 years ago

[09.02.23] Excerpt from the Interview with A. Sagyndykov, Director General of LLC Shabdan-Ata

At the present time Shabdan-Ata has 300 hectares of land under vineyards. We have restored the factory in Vinogradnaya village. Now we offer 25 kinds of wine in our assortment, though 11 years ago we started out with just one. By 2004 we plan to introduce 25 more kinds of wine, including 10 varieties of champagne. In summer, 400 people are employed at the vineyards. We provide them with seasonal jobs. 80 people are regular plant employees.
We are trying to be innovative. There are however certain barriers to hamper wine industry legislature of the Republic. For instance, by law, the vineyards belong to us, but the 300 hectares of land are the state property and we are renting it. It is just as if I purchase the house and have to pay rent for the land that it occupies. Our land can be expropriated any minute
Export is our main problem. Kyrgyz wine producers have not managed yet to arrange export of our wines. Shabdan-Ata and many other Kyrgyz wine producers tried to export the product to Kazakhstan, but we didnt have any success in the neighboring country. The current system of taxation restrains any attempts of the Kyrgyz entrepreneurs to export wine to Kazakhstan while our neighbors import their wine and the border procedures take no more than 20 minutes for them. Im sure that our wine could be popular in Russia, but then again its all about transit through Kazakhstan
Our primary objective is to create association of Kyrgyz wine producers to develop our strategies for entering foreign markets. Initially 10 major wine producers of Kyrgyzstan will join it: LLC Kara-Balta Aragy, Ave Maria, Shabdan-Bagration, Aiazmar, JSC Adis, company Kantvino and 2-3 Osh producers

"A&F Kyrgyzstan", #6 February, 2003

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