Vladimir Putin to Smuggle Booze Into Russia Via Grey Market
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Vladimir Putin Reportedly Signs ‘Secret Deal’ to Circumvent Exports Ban, Smuggle Booze Into Russia Via ‘Grey Market’

Vladimir Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends the summit with leaders of post-soviet countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) in expanded format in Astana on Oct. 14. (Photo by KONSTANTIN ZAVRAZHIN/SPUTNIK/AFP via Getty Images)

Russian President Vladimir Putin has approved a “secret deal” to smuggle alcohol into Russia amid the country’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine, according to The Daily Record.

By signing this order, Putin has reportedly found a way to get around a ban on exports that has been imposed on Russia due to the invasion. Per The Daily Record, Russia will now be able to import brands such as Johnnie Walker, The Macallan and Bell’s via a process called parallel imports.

By using the parallel imports system, aka “the grey market,” Russia will be able to receive goods without the consent of manufacturers, owners or license-holders.

The Daily Mirror reported that leaked Russian government documents showed Putin signed a law to legalize parallel imports in June 2022.

Additionally, Russia’s ministry of industry and trade explained the decision to have parallel imports on its website, writing: “Import stimulation is aimed at those niches in which Russian production cannot yet fully meet the needs of industrial enterprises and end consumers.”

According to The Daily Mirror, Russia is attempting to import scotch whisky brands including Lagavulin, Bowmore and Aberlour via this technique, as well as other booze products such as Jägermeister, Jack Daniel’s, Jim Beam and Malibu.

The Russian Association of Retailers asked Putin to allow parallel imports of alcohol following sanctions on the nation, per The Daily Mirror.

Other goods including cars, chemicals, household appliances, game consoles, clothes, shoes and toys are also expected to be imported through this method.

Putin has ruled that any item not manufactured in Russia can be imported.

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David Morrow is the managing editor of Whiskey Raiders and has been with the company since September 2021. David has worked in journalism since 2015 and has had bylines at Sports Illustrated, Def Pen, the Des Moines Register and the Quad City Times. David holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Saint Louis University and a Master of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. When he’s not tasting the newest exciting whiskey releases, David enjoys spending time with his wife and dog, watching sports and traveling.