The consumption of alcohol by residents of Estonia did not change in 2012 compared to the previous year, averaging 10.6 liters of pure alcohol per capita, it appears from the fresh alcohol market survey by the Estonian Institute of Economic Research (EKI).
The study showed a moderate increase in the consumption of wine and cider while the consumption of strong alcohol and beer decreased. The average quantities per head of population were 77.5 liters of beer, 10.8 liters of low-alcohol drinks, 10.5 liters of wine and 10.3 liters of strong alcoholic beverages.
The inflow of alcohol duties into the state budget amounted to 195 million euros last year, which is nearly 9 percent more than in 2011. The increase was due to a rise in excise duty rates and the growth in legal domestic sales owing to increased purchases by tourists.
The number of foreign visitors to Estonia grew in 2012. Border crossings by foreigners numbered 5.3 million, with Finnish tourists accounting for 41 percent of the total. Finns also account for the biggest part of cross-border alcohol purchases.
The illegal alcohol market remains a problem. According to EKI's shadow economy study, illicit liquor accounts for nearly one fourth of vodka consumption.