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10-day moratorium on cutting trees

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, August 23
The Mayor of Tbilisi, David Narmania, has announced a ten-day moratorium on cutting down trees in the city after more than 40 trees were allegedly illegally cut down on Kazbegi Avenue as a result of construction projects.

Narmania said that over the next 10 days, discussions will be held about the issue with any public organization or individuals in City Hall.

"It is true that we have made some changes some time ago; we changed some rules, although it seems that this issue will be reviewed. We are ready to sit down with all interested parties and discuss these issues in order to make the regulations even stricter,” Narmania said.

However, the Mayor, who promised to plant one million trees if elected, said that during this process business interests must still be respected.

“We should bear in mind that urbanization is an irreversible process in the 21st century, that's why we have to take certain regulations which will enable us to further develop our city”, said Narmania.

The Prosecutor's Office of Tbilisi launched an investigation into the illegal felling of trees on Kazbegi Avenue, while a local company strives to launch construction projects.

It is one of the major priorities of all developed countries and cities to maximally promote green areas, when Tbilisi, which once was one of the greenest cities in Europe, is turning into a concrete jungle.

Tbilisi, which is considered as one of the country's main tourist attractions, has no genuine city development plan.

Meanwhile, the Mayor claims he is actively engaged in the planting of trees. Indeed, thousands of trees have been planted, but without necessary care, and many are already dying.

Narmania was one of the picks of Georgia’s ex-Prime Minister and founder of the current ruling Georgian Dream (GD) coalition, Bidzina Ivanishvili.

Analysts agree it was the public's attitude to Ivanishvili and not to Narmania which encouraged people to vote for him.

However, after elected, a range of negative assessments are being voiced over the Mayor's conduct, among them his attitude towards environmental and infrastructural issues.

If Narmania continues his current path it is unlikely that he will be re-elected, especially when the people’s positive attitude towards Ivanishvili has significantly decreased since 2012.