August 8, 2017A new approach to managing New Zealand’s fisheries is needed
The New Zealand Sport Fishing Council has released its Manifesto and calls on New Zealand’s political parties to consider a new approach to setting policy.
The Council has consulted with its members over what they want to see in terms of stewardship of New Zealand’s fisheries and that consultation has formed the basis of the Manifesto.
Spokesman Scott Macindoe says New Zealand’s fisheries are owned by the public of New Zealand, yet all too often that is forgotten in the rush to commercialisation.
“These fish belong to all New Zealanders and attempts to change public access to fish amounts to privatisation by stealth. With this Manifesto we want New Zealand political parties to fully embrace the entirety of the fisheries issues, not just the short-term commercial gain that might be there for the few.”
The Manifesto includes five major policy requirements. Those policies are:
Establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into fisheries management and the Quota Management System.
Amend the Fisheries Act 1996 to include an Allocation Principle.
Remove industrial fishing methods such as trawling, seining and dredging from the inshore zone.
Establish a separate, well-resourced Ministry of Fisheries.
Amend section 13 of the Fisheries Act to deliver a minimum biomass target of 50%, in line with international best practice.
“The challenges facing New Zealand’s fisheries are broad and complex and merely tinkering with the detail of the current system simply won’t work. We face a tipping point for many overrfished stocks and if we don’t act now we may not have a fishery to protect in years to come.
“We call on all New Zealand’s political parties to take this issue seriously. Recreational fishers know the current model is untenable – we want to ensure there are fish left in the sea for future generations to enjoy. We have already seen an end to plentiful crayfish, gurnard and trevally in many areas, and said goodbye to John dory and hapuku.
The current focus on exporting so much of our precious inshore fish for less than $3.00 per kilo when Kiwis cannot buy it for anywhere near that price has to stop. We will be advising our members according to which party supports that view.”
The full Manifesto is available to download at the LegaSea website:
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