According to the data of the Estonian Institute of Economic Research, the share of illegal vodka formed 20-23% of the Estonian market last year, due to which the state was deprived of 13.4 million euros in uncollected tax money, Riigikogu Finance Committee roundtable meeting "Excise goods and illegal market" stated on Thursday, LETA/Postimees Online reports.
Head of the Estonian Institute of Economic Research Marje Josing said that buying illegal vodka is clearly related to people's income level – for example, in 2007, during the economic boom, the market share of illegal vodka was only 10%.
"If you have money, you go to the store and purchase a bottle of legal vodka," said Josing. The Institute's statistics indicated it is increasingly possible to buy illegal vodka directly from other people and less from bars and pubs.
While in 1998, one fifth of buyers purchased illegal alcohol in bars or pubs, today this share has decreased almost to zero, while the person-to-person sale on streets has increased from 5% to 42%.