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CASTLE MALTING NEWS in partnership with www.e-malt.com Dutch
31 May, 2006



Brewing news Russia: Baltika files lawsuit against Russian tax authority

Baltika, the Russian joint venture brewery business majority-owned by Scottish & Newcastle and Denmark's Carlsberg, filed May 30 a lawsuit against the tax authority in Moscow, The Herald posted May 31.

The Russian tax authority has demanded that Baltika pay tax arrears of around €14.2m (£9.7m), a spokesman for the company said.

The arrears date back to the fourth quarter of 2003 and the first nine months of 2004. However, a spokesman for Russia's biggest brewer disputed the tax demand as too high, commenting: "We have filed a suit and we will continue to defend our point of view in court."
Earlier this month, Baltika posted a modest gain in first-quarter net income on sales up 13.8% to around £128 million – however, volume had been impacted by distribution difficulties caused by the severe winter weather.

Russia was hit by its coldest winter in a generation, with temperatures plummeting to minus 30 degrees and putting something of a freeze on beer sales. The St Petersburg-based company, which held May 30 its annual meeting, approved a 70% hike in its annual dividend payment.






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