Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


National's hypocrisy bottomless - Cullen

"Either National's hypocrisy is bottomless or it is in the grip of mass amnesia," acting Fisheries Minister Michael Cullen said today.

"There is no other explanation for the attitude the National Opposition is taking toward the Fisheries Bill now going through its third reading in Parliament.

"I have to keep pinching myself to remember that this is the same party which decided in government that no compensation was due to commercial fishers who might have their catch history reduced by up to 20 percent," Dr Cullen said.

Dr Cullen was commenting on legislation to enable the eight species on the Fourth Schedule of the Fisheries Act 1996 to be brought into the Quota Management System. The schedule includes the South Island eel fishery which has to be brought into the QMS by 1 October to satisfy the terms of the 1998 Ngai Tahu Settlement. Other Fourth Schedule species are due to be brought into the QMS from 2002.

"National is now arguing that the bill should cover only the South Island eel resource and that the other seven species should be held out for further negotiation with industry stakeholders on a compensation regime.

"National told those same stakeholders to "get lost" when it was in office. It took the election of the Labour-Alliance Government to get fishers a fair deal.

"In fact what we are offering is more than fair. It is generous. We estimate the package is worth almost $50 million all up - around $4.5 million in direct payments and $45 million in assets," Dr Cullen said.

Under the Fisheries Settlement negotiated between Crown and Maori in 1992, it was agreed that the Crown would allocate 20 percent of the total allowable commercial catch to Maori as species were introduced to the QMS.

This means in effect that many current fishers will have their catch history reduced by up to 20 percent to enable the Crown to meet its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi.

"The Government will compensate them by paying them half the market value for this 20 percent. That is where the $4.5 million will go.

"They will be getting an asset they can sell, and from which they will get a capital gain. Unlike a fishing licence which must be renewed each year, quota is issued in perpetuity and therefore carries stronger property rights.

"Our advice is that the 80 percent stake has a current value of $45 million. Licence holders will be getting that at no charge," Dr Cullen said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Decision Day: Peters Chooses Labour

Winston Peters says he will form a Government in coalition with Labour and the Greens giving confidence and supply.

Peters said he had been offered the position of Deputy Prime Minister and a number of other ministerial posts would go to his colleagues

He said economic and monetary policy changes were needed to face a coming economic downturn.>>>More


Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome


Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>


Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>


Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>


Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>


Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>


Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>




Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election