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New Zealand seafood company leading the way

5th July 2006

New Zealand seafood company leading the way

The NZ Seafood Industry Council congratulates Sealord for their participation in the world-first proposal to voluntarily close areas in the high-seas of the Indian Ocean to deepwater trawling. Sealord is one of four major international fishing companies to propose the closures, which are equivalent in total area to almost the size of Norway.

"This is a bold move and demonstrates that New Zealand companies can proactively work with others to protect marine bio-diversity," said Alastair Macfarlane, Trade and Information Manager of New Zealand Seafood Industry Council said.

The voluntary closures to high seas deepwater trawling in the Indian Ocean follow on from the New Zealand seafood industry's own proposal earlier this year to close over 30% of New Zealand's Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) to bottom trawling.

"The Indian Ocean announcement is timed to coincide with a meeting at the FAO in Rome to form the Southern Indian Ocean Fisheries Agreement. New Zealand companies have been involved in fishing the high seas of the Indian Ocean for several years. We strongly support countries working collaboratively to manage fish stocks sustainably and effectively for all.

"We welcome the development of regional arrangements that can lead to forming effective Regional Fisheries Management Organisations (RFMO's)," said Mr Macfarlane.

ENDS

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