Eighteen producers and industry representatives from the countries of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, and the Ukraine visited TTB's National Laboratory Center (Lab) on February 1, 2012. The Lab is a state-of-the-art-facility in Beltsville, Maryland, which houses our Beverage Alcohol, Nonbeverage Products, and Tobacco Laboratories. The wine marketing and promotion group toured the Beverage Alcohol Laboratory and received a briefing from its director.
The tour was part of the Department of Commerce's Special American Business Internship Training Program, or SABIT. The SABIT program provides technical assistance and training Eurasian business leaders in U.S. business practices.
Our involvement in the event was to explain U.S. import requirements and answer any questions the group had. TTB representatives have previously met with similar groups through SABIT in January 2010 and January 2011.
According to data from the Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission, the United States imported the following amount of wine (Harmonized Tariff Schedule code 2204) from these countries in 2010: Georgia-$1.1 million, Moldova-$857,000, Ukraine-$239,000, Azerbaijan-$114,000.
Meetings like this support Treasury's goal of enhancing U.S. competitiveness by encouraging free trade and open markets and providing direct assistance to developing countries. Further, meetings like this help ensure that alcohol beverage products comply with Federal production, labeling, and advertising requirements.