Fisheries Letter to option4
the Minister of Fisheries
Office of Hon. J. Anderton
option4 Project Team Leader
PO Box 37951
Dear Mr Barnes
I refer to your letter of 8 May 2007
requesting a meeting to discuss your submission in support of the
Fisheries Amendment Bill and the future management of shared fisheries.
The Fisheries Amendment Bill is currently being dealt with through
the Select Committee process and I am not in a position to discuss
it prior to it being reported back to Parliament.
I appreciate your offer to provide further input on the future management
of shared fisheries. I have already received the “People's
Submission” whose development was co-ordinated by option4.
The submission process showed that there is considerable support
for change across the areas identified in the public discussion
document, but that there is no consensus on the way forward.
I have also received a proposal from the Chief Executives of Te
Ohu Kai Moana, SeaFIC, and the NZ Recreational Fishing Council to
develop a policy framework for shared fisheries. Their proposal
includes a commitment to work with other organisations that have
an interest in improving the management of shared fisheries.
I value the knowledge and experience that stakeholders have concerning
the management of shared fisheries and at this time my preference
is to encourage organisations to share this with each other. In
view of this, I am prepared to recommend to Cabinet that stakeholders
have an opportunity to provide further input as part of moving forward.
Accordingly, at this time my preference is to encourage stakeholders
to work together, rather than meet with a particular group.
You have also referred to the kahawai case in your letter. The Shared
Fisheries discussion document identified the need to better recognise
non-commercial interests in fisheries management decision-making.
Justice Harrison’s findings are consistent with this position
in respect of allocation. The decision adds to the guidance provided
by the courts, but overall it still leaves some questions unanswered.
In my view, the ongoing uncertainty means that there is merit in
progressing the Shared Fisheries policy initiative.
Minister of Fisheries
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