No consensus for reforms
The Hokianga Accord agreed it could not stand back and let the Fisheries 2030 process be pushed through without making a substantial contribution. The recent hui provided an ideal opportunity to discuss the proposals in more detail and more importantly explore ways to collectively respond.
Of significant concern is the potential for MFish to use the Fisheries 2030 proposals to justify amendments to the Fisheries Act that will change the nature of existing fishing rights.
Replacing current non-commercial fishing rights with an ‘allocation’ and trading rights will have the most effect on people who are reliant on catching fish to put food on the table.
While Maori have statutory rights to fish for customary purposes, most of the time we fish to feed our whanau we do so under the Amateur Fishing Regulations.
So any proposals that seek to change this most basic right of all New Zealanders to fish for food needs to be clearly stated and widely debated.
Currently there is no consensus to reform legislation to enable trading of area or fishing rights.