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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Jack Hibberd

South Africa has broken the 10% market share by value barrier for the first time, moving above Italy to become the fourth-biggest importer to the UK. Other big winners in the latest Nielsen figures (MAT to 9 August 2004) are New World competitors the US (11.8% to 13.8% by value) and Chile (5.5% to 5.8%). Germany's inexorable decline continues, with market share by value falling to 5.3% from 5.7%, meaning it now comes last among the eight major importing nations (behind Chile for the first time). Elsewhere, Australia's growth slowed to just 0.2%; France fell 1.4% to 19.2%; and Spain was down slightly to 6.1% from 6.6%. Overall, every Old World nation reported a loss of market share (including Bulgaria, Portugal and Romania), while every New World nation (except for Argentina) increased sales. These results prove the focus the South African wine industry has put on increasing the amount of wine sold above 5 has been successful,' said Sophie Waggett of Wines of South Africa. Also encouraging is the fact that the average price paid for South African wine in the UK is now 20 pence higher than this time last year.'