October 1, 2014 / 7:38 AM / 3 years ago

InBev to close brewery in Russia

MOSCOW, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Anheuser-Busch InBev subsidiary SUN InBev said on Wednesday it would close its Angarsk brewery in East Siberia citing higher taxes and toughened regulation.

It marks the fourth plant closure by the world’s largest brewer in Russia in two years as the government boosts regulation aiming to curb alcohol sales.

“Given the general market decline, we must act and take the necessary measures to maintain the competitiveness of our Russian business,” Andrey Gubka, Anheuser-Busch InBev’s president for Russia and Ukraine, said in a statement.

An excise tax increase and various restrictions and bans have made Russia’s regulation of the sector among the strictest in the world, the company said.

Baltika, the Russian unit of Denmark’s Carlsberg, this week also suspended production at one of its breweries.

Russia’s stagnating economy, which is expected to grow 0.5 percent in gross domestic product terms this year versus an earlier official forecast of up to 3 percent, has squeezed consumer spending. (Reporting by Maria Kiselyova; writing by Vladimir Soldatkin; editing by Jason Neely)

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