Street Vendors Offered Spaces at Tbilisi Markets

TBILISI – After banning street trading, the Mayor’s office of Tbilisi offered new areas to street vendors in which they can work for free for the next six months. The Tbilisi Mayor’s Office prohibited street trading last month and began removing illegal stalls from the streets. City Hall says that street trading in the busiest and most crowded parts of the city prevents movement on the sidewalks, creates sanitation problems, and disturbs the local population and tourists with noise.

The Association of Markets said they are able to allocate trading areas for over 3,000 vendors in the following areas: at the railway station, near Dinamo Arena, in the Didube Metro Station New Market Territory, and at the Isani and Samgori markets. All interested vendors can apply to the administration of these markets for registration.

The traders have said they refuse to move to the new markets, however, claiming they will not be able to pay the market taxes once the 6-month free offer runs out, as their income is too low.

“All illegal activities will be addressed with the proper measures," the Deputy Mayor, Irakli Lekvinadze stated last week. "Tbilisi City Hall will do its best to prevent street trading and speculation about the issue will not hinder this process." Today, the Mayor’s office released a statement claiming that during removal of the illegal stands they found spoiled and expired food which the street vendors were trying to sell. “Meat, cheese and eggs were being kept without any sanitary norms,” the City Hall statement said.


By Thea Morrison

05 April 2017 14:22