TBILISI, DFWatch–Owners of about 40 fishing boats in Poti demonstrated Friday to demand less strict environmental protection in order to compete with the Turkish fishing fleet.

The boat owners, who use seines to catch anchovy, think the law puts them at a disadvantage compared to their Turkish colleagues who are working under a law that is not so restrictive.

Now they demand that the local authorities in Poti go to the Environment Protection Ministry and the Economy Ministry to ask to amend the law.

The fishermen believe the problem can be solved by liberalizing the procedures for getting a license to catch anchovy.

Poti Mayor Irakli Kakulia met with the protesters and promised to help them.

Georgian fishermen have complained In previous years that the Turkish boats are better equipped and able to extract more anchovy. Another problem is that the fishing license is too expensive for many.