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Slave Ships And Prosser

Laws intended to end slave-like conditions on foreign fishing boats in New Zealand waters has completed its first hurdle with the support of all MPs.

The first reading of the Fisheries (Foreign Charter Vessels and Other Matters) Amendment Bill was completed on a voice vote.

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy said the proposed law had come out the ministerial inquiry into conditions in the fisheries industry.

This has confirmed serious incidents of mistreatment and underpayment of some crews, which he hoped this bill would prevent.

The main part of the bill would require foreign fishing vessels to reflag as New Zealand ships so they would have to comply with New Zealand laws and conditions.

The fishing charter vessels would have four years to reflag.

Labour MP Damien O’Connor said the area covered by the bill had been fraught with problems.

Labour believed the legislation was good and it would be supported, but he had some concerns about the framework.

The bill is to be reported back by the Primary Production Committee by June 21.

The bill was also notable for Richard Prosser making his first speech in Parliament since his widely condemned comments about Muslims.

He was heckled for much of the speech with Tau Henare calling on him to stand down from Parliament. Prosser replied that he would outlast Henare.


Earlier, after Question Time, the Financial Markets Conduct Bill completed its second reading by 105 to 15 with Greens and Mana opposing.

The House rose at 6pm interrupting the second reading debate on the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (Covered Bonds) Amendment Bill.

**
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