Placing bee hives in the forest has become chargeable. The change was made under the 221th Regulation of the Government of Georgia "On the Rules of Forest Use". The fee on per bee-hive will be GEL 1 during a year.
One of the reasons for this change is the regulation of existing faulty practices. However, as explained in the Ministry of Agriculture, the change will improve the traceability of honey and allow beekeepers to export certified products.
While paying GEL 1 per bee-hive is not an insurmountable expense, beekeepers say the sector needs help not an additional cost at this stage.
Vladimer Vardosanidze, the founder of Despani Ltd, hopes that this money will be spent on arranging the relevant infrastructure in the areas.
"For those who have a large number of bees, this is a large amount. Additional taxes are never welcome, but the main thing is why this tax is set. If we benefit from nature, we give more benefit to it as well.
We need to know what the purpose of this money will be, whether nomadic routes will be arranged, so that beekeepers can reach bees in inaccessible places and get alpine honey, which is so precious.
I am not against taxes in general, the state stands on it, but I do not think that today the beekeeping sector is so developed that it should be taxed. I think at this stage it is better to help beekeepers, to put on their feet, to develop the production of not only honey but also other more valuable products, to increase awareness, nothing will be difficult for a beekeeper and he will pay one GEL 1 as well as GEL 10”, Vladimer Vardosanidze told BM.GE.
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