Chile is the world’s fifth-largest wine exporter

With 8% of the global market, Chilean wines surpass their US counterparts in international presence. The secret of their success lies with the price-quality ratio of the South American country’s wines.

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The price-quality ratio of Chilean wines continues to help them make inroads into international markets. This was revealed in the latest report on the wine industry by the French Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin (OIV).

According to the document, the South American country’s wines represented 8% of total global wine exports in 2009 compared to 6.6% the year before.

Thus, Chile has consolidated itself as the fifth-largest exporter in the world and comfortably surpasses the United States, which came in sixth. Unlike the South American country’s wine industry, which minimized the effects of the economic crisis, US vineyards did perceive its effects and their participation fell from 5.2% of the global market in 2008 to 4.6% in 2009.

According to René Merino, president of the Wines of Chile, the South American country’s industry has a comparative advantage over its US counterpart. “The price is extremely high in the United States and over the last few years the crisis has prompted demand for cheaper wines, where Chile presents major advantages,” he stated.

Thus, last year Chile sent 6.9 million hectoliters abroad. For its part, the United States sold 3.9 million to external markets. The country reduced the gap with the fourth-ranked exporter Australia: while the country in Oceania held a 1.2% lead over Chile in 2008, it was down to 0.9% in 2009.

Italy continues to be world leader with an industry that totals 21.5% of global exports, followed by Spain and France.