NGOs Call for In-Depth Analysis of Forest Management Legislation
15 September, 2011
NGOs Call for In-Depth Analysis of Forest Management Legislation

Georgian environmental-friendly non-governmental watchdogs find the underway draft  project for Forest Code and the lease agreement premature and incompetent to deal with the national resources. 

Georgian non-governmental organizations propose to Georgian government to make the draft project for Forest Code and lease agreement more open to public discussion and not to jump on decisions that may have an irretrievable evil to the country like Georgia 40% of which is made of forests. The point is only 10-15% of it can be

used for economic activity as Georgia is a highland region and natural disasters, risks including landslips and floods are quite high.

On September 4, 2011 Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources of Georgia (MENRG) disseminated the drafts of the Forest Code and the lease agreement and the electronic versions of the documents were sent to the representatives of the following organizations: World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Green Alternative, the Greens Movement of Georgia, the Centre for Strategic Research and Development of Georgia (CSRDG), the Aarhus Centre Georgia, and Caucasus Environmental NGO Network (CENN). Ministry also informed that the discussion date was scheduled by September 15, 2011. Papers were presented in English.

The manner of dissemination of draft projects, as well as preliminary appointment of discussion date without agreeing with the NGOs, as well as the content of papers made  non-governmental watch-dogs to draw out alarming conclusions that inclusion of publicity in decision-making process to  make things transparent  was a mere formality.

Moreover, the unclear language of the draft project creates some doubt that the draft documents are copied and the problems of the country are not considered.

The restricted participation of the Georgian experts in the draft documents is obvious. None of the Georgian language legal documents is considered in the papers. The authors of the draft documents did not consult with the representatives of the competent state agencies responsible for environmental and forest issues.

Moreover, the environmentalists worry that the role of parliament, competent state agencies in management of natural resources as well as the international and national norms and standards ensuring public participation in decision-making process are all underestimated.

Based on the above risks the green watch-dogs predict that the underway forestry reform will be implemented in an accelerated manner without proper public, as well as parliament and state agencies  inclusion  that will threaten natural resources, economy and ecology as well as the development of the regions and interests of the population of the country.

“The government will not take into account the comments, remarks and recommendations of the public and international organizations,” NGOs fear.

The civil society of Georgia hailed Georgian authorities to ensure translation of the draft documents and their dissemination among the interested audience and establish the reasonable date of the discussions. NGOs ask all the governmental bodies both at legislative and executive power to immediately request the Georgian version of the draft documents and start their discussion with participation of the public.

The questioned draft projects were presented for discussions to NGOs in response to their statements in this past July that government makes haste and incompetent reforms of forest management.

Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources of Georgia came out with the initiative in July to cancel short-term lease of forests, cancel l5-20 year-long licenses on timbering active prior the reforms and give forests only through 49-year lease. Aleko Khetaguri, Minister of Energy and Natural recourse of Georgia, stated that population will have an opportunity to extract an unlimited amount of timber [up to this change one household could cut 5 cubic meter of timber only] in the areas permitted for cut. However Khetaguri accentuated that all lessees will be obliged to plant three trees instead of one cut tree.

According to Nino Enukidze, Deputy Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, population can cut only the trees marked by rangers.

On the other hand leaseholders will be able to exploit any mineral water, deposit or previously unknown minerals in case of discovery on the leased forests territory. 1.8 million hectares of forests are slated for privatization at the moment.

Khetaguri’s statement alarmed environmentalists as the described changes are supposed to make possible, quite simply and without any prior ecological research, to replace forest cutting by another activity, which will be more destructive for the ecosystem. They worry that the new Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources that adopted forest management starting this past spring perceives forests as the means of receiving quick fiscal effect without even discussing the necessity of their conservation and sustainable use.

Other Stories
Doing business in Georgia has become easier than in America
According to the Doing Business 2019 report published by the World Bank, Georgia ranked 6th among 190 countries in terms of simplicity of doing business. This was an improvement over two ranks compared to last year.
Problems that foreigners frequently face in Georgia
The importance of Georgia as a tourism hub is growing year after year.
Tbilisi TV Broadcasting Tower – Better than the Eiffel Tower?
It is planned to renovate the Tbilisi TV Broadcasting Tower, one of the landmarks in the capital.
Georgian Fusion Menu by The Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi
5,895,914 international visitors have visited Georgia between January and August of 2018. Compared to the previous year the number has increased by 12.2 per cent.
Advertising of gambling and lucrative games may become banned in Georgia
Advertising of gambling and lucrative games may become banned in Georgia. Those who violate the new rule would be fined GEL 10 000.
Lebanese café-lounge Beirut opens in Tbilisi
What is necessary to organize an unforgettable event? – Fun, emotions, lots of surprises, good music and delicious menu.
Georgia second among the fastest growing tourist destinations in Europe
Georgia is among the fastest growing tourist destinations in Europe. The data is published by the UN World Tourism Organization.
Bitmain launches world digital mining summit in Tbilisi, Georgia
Bitmain CEO Jihan Wu and Roger Ver, CEO of Head Speaker List featuring Circle, and Genesis Mining when Digital Mining Leaders Convene In Tbilisi on September 21-23
TBC Bank and Gazelle Finance have teamed-up to support Medical City, a leading healthcare provider in the western region of Georgia to launch the Western Regional Center Of Modern Medical Technologies.
Equivalent to buried treasure – resources that are underused in Georgia
For 2018 the IMF Commission has forecast an annual economic growth for the Georgian economy of about 5,5%.
Does the quality of Georgian wine increase and how the export affects it
If we look at the data collected about modern Georgian wine, we will find out that the Georgian wines produced between 2015-2017 are much better in terms of their quality and Oenologic features rather than the wines produced between 2009-2011.
Japan simplifies the visa requirements for Georgian citizens
Diplomatic and economic relations between Georgia and Japan are now moving to a new phase. Recently Japan has decided to simplify the visa requirements for Georgian citizens.
M&S (Marks and Spencer) and H&M collections to be produced in Georgia
Garments manufacturer MGMTEX will start production of the M&S and H&M trendy collections from this September.
The World Digital Mining Summit to be held in Georgia
The summit is scheduled to take place between 21st-23rd September in the Hualing Hotel, Tbilisi, Georgia.
Galt and Taggart - Tourism Boom Continues in Georgia
Tourism has become one of the key drivers for the Georgian economy. Galt and Taggart has recently published research about the Georgian tourism sector in the first half of 2018.
"The worst dream for Putin is that Russians want to live in Georgia"
This year, visitors to the Adjara region would notice that there is a boom in construction in and around Batumi.
Underground gas storage facility to be built in Georgia
KfW, a German government-owned development bank signed a EUR 150 million promotional loan with the state-owned Georgian Oil and Gas Corporation (GOGC) for the construction of the first underground gas storage facility in Georgia.
New gambling rules for Georgia
Georgian lawmakers are preparing a new draft law relating to online-casinos and gambling that will seek to curb gambling addiction in Georgia.
How expensive is it to visit Georgia?
The Georgian Lari (GEL) is the official currency of Georgia and is the only legal means of payment in the entire territory of Georgia.
Trade with the EU and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) has grown significantly
Trade with the EU and the CIS has grown by 26% and 33.5 % respectively, says GeoStat, the Georgian National Statistics Office.
The unemployment rate decreases in Georgia
The unemployment rate decreased in Georgia by 1,9% and amounted to 12.1% in the 2nd quarter of 2018 compared with the previous quarter,
Memorandum of Understanding to be signed between Georgia and Malaysia
According to the Georgian Ambassador to Malaysia Nikoloz Apkhazava, Georgia plans to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Malaysia.
“Blauenstein Georgia” due to expand in Georgia
“Blauenstein Georgia” is planning to open more shops in Georgia. It is an agriculture company that sells meat products, meat and convenience food.
The amount of Direct Foreign Investment rises in Georgia
According to the information of the National Statistics Office of Georgia, the amount of direct foreign investment in Georgia has risen
It’s going to get  harder for foreigners to get residence permit in Georgia
It’s going to get harder for foreigners to get permit of residence in Georgia.
Exchange Rates
GEL Exchange Rate
Other Stories
Recently Toyota rolled out Global Campaign under this slogan that reflects the Olympic and Paralympic Spirit of Encouragement,
A couple from Switzerland combines Swiss tradition and technology with Georgian products. Their cheese is made in the Georgian mountains and sold in local stores and hotels.
It has been more than five years since the residents of Lilo village, near Tbilisi, cannot open their windows.
63 000 GEL was received by the Georgian Agro Export Group which is just a small part of the European Neighbourhood Programme for Agricultural and Rural development.
Georgian entrepreneur Guka Tavberidze, who runs his own business in the UK and does it quite well, has been invited by BBC
The grand opening of 7-star The Biltmore Hotel Tbilisi took place in Georgia’s capital on July 31.
DUSHETI, Georgia – The Georgian government and the World Bank will allocate USD 5.6 million (12 million GEL) to fund
A new Georgian clothing brand named Person has emerged in Georgian market.
Georgia is in the midst of an economic maelstrom, Euronews reports.
Situation at Georgia’s mineral water market is interesting: over the last year, the volume of export has grown by 56 percent. According to “GeoStat”, over $114 million worth of mineral water was sold
GEL Exchange
November 2018
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30