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Labour fisheries policy focused on future


Labour fisheries policy focused on future of our oceans for all New Zealanders

Fisheries Minister David Benson-Pope confirmed Labour's intention to further improve the management of our fisheries resources.

"Labour's fisheries policy recognises the high value we put on our oceans as not just a source of food or jobs, but also as an integral part of our national identity," said Mr Benson-Pope.

"We can rightly be proud of our world-renowned quota management system which we use to manage fish stocks.

However, we recognise that fish stocks are just one aspect of our oceans that we must manage.

"The challenge in the 21st Century is to effectively use our fisheries resources in a sustainable way while protecting non-target species, the wider environment, and the rights of non commercial fishers, as well as the rights of future generations.

" Mr Benson-Pope says Labour's fisheries policy recognises the complex interconnectedness of our fisheries.

Important features of the policy include: Working with industry to ensure continued growth and innovation in the seafood sector and improving its sustainable economic performance, with emphasis on value-added processing for the benefit of New Zealanders.

Enhancing the quality of recreational fishing, including where appropriate, managing some recreational species above, or significantly above, MSY (the level of fish stock that will allow maximum catch without compromising sustainability).

Requiring sustained reductions in fisheries bycatch of marine mammals and seabirds, including using mandatory targets and mitigation measures.

Combating destructive fishing practices and illegal, unregulated or unreported (IUU) fishing on the high seas through a range of initiatives agreed with other nations.

Focusing on stopping the illegal harvest and trade of fish species, particularly paua and rock lobster, including through multi-agency initiatives.

"New Zealanders can be proud of our wonderful and unique marine environment," said Mr Benson-Pope.

"We will continue to encourage growth and innovation within our fishing industry while ensuring fair and sustainable access to our fisheries resources for all.

We encourage all New Zealanders to work together to protect our fisheries for future generations.

"

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