Georgia is tightening sanctions against illegal tree felling to reduce damage to forests and encourage the sustainable development of forests in the country.
The Ministry of Environment Protection and Agriculture of Georgia has been working on regulating and strengthening laws that concern forests and relevant legislative amendments have already been proposed to the Parliament of Georgia.
The amendments will make a person criminally accountable for tree felling if they have already faced administrative measures.
The sanctions will also be tightened against illegally cutting trees from the Red List and this action will be criminally prosecutable.
The amount of administrative fines will be significantly increased for cutting trees and shrubs which are included in the forest fund and protected areas.
The amendments include tightened sanctions against poaching as well; if a person violates the hunting laws after an administrative penalty is imposed, he/she will be deprived of the right to carry a hunting weapon for a certain period of time.
Employees of the environmental patrol and rapid response division patrol 24 hours a day to detain illegally obtained natural resources and to prevent such actions.