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That’s it, Jim? Provisional 108ha for aquaculture?

Phil Heatley MP
National Party Fisheries Spokesman

15 February 2008

That’s it, Jim? A provisional 108 hectares for aquaculture?

More than three years after promising to free up more marine space for aquaculture, Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton has announced ‘preliminary’ approval for 108 hectares, says National’s Fisheries spokesman, Phil Heatley.

“This is the first whiff of any new Aquaculture Management Area (AMA) anywhere in the country since the new legislation came into place in January 2005, and even then it is only ‘provisional’.

“Jim Anderton has thrown committees at the problem, cash at the problem, and made all sorts of lofty promises.

“Under pressure to do anything before he fades into political oblivion, he has announced preliminary approval for around 100 hectares in the Tasman region, although in the same breath he has ruled out a further 2,001 hectares.

“There is no guarantee that at the end of the submission period for this Tasman Bay AMA in April, that it will actually be granted. That will leave the Minister’s record on creating new AMA’s anywhere in the country intact. Zilch in three years.

“New Zealand’s natural resources are perfect for marine farming. The potential of this industry is huge, and Labour procrastinates while multi million-dollar opportunities are lost.

“This announcement by Labour is just further proof that their so-called aquaculture reforms were just more empty promises by a Government that has run out of ideas, is out of touch with the industry, and will never deliver.”


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