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Luxton Addresses Recreational Fishing Conference

MEDIA RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE USE 23 JULY 1999

Achieving Progress Together - Luxton Addresses Recreational Fishing Conference

Fisheries Minister, Hon John Luxton today expressed his delight at the collaborative approach between recreational fishing sector and the Government to better define recreational fishing rights.

Speaking at the New Zealand Recreational Fishing Council's conference in Auckland today, Mr Luxton said the Ministry of Fisheries and the NZRFC were making good progress together through the Recreational Fishing Rights Joint Working Group

"Last year I challenged the Council to work with Government to better define recreational rights and determine how recreational fishing rights might better be managed. I am heartened to see that this year, the conference theme is "Property Rights."

"New Zealand has a deserved reputation for being among the best countries in the world for recreational fishing. We need to protect and improve on that. Enjoying good quality recreational fishing is part of being a New Zealander."

"Having the least clearly defined rights of all stakeholders, has made it difficult for the recreational sector to take action to improve recreational fishing. Recreational fishers want the ability to access a fair share of the total catch for many years to come."

"It is important that recreational fishers have a real input into fisheries management decisions. I believe in democratising the fishery and clearly recreational fishers are the best people to manage their rights."

The Minister noted that at the conference participants will be considering the working group's report and, following consultation with other stakeholders, a draft public discussion paper will be prepared for Cabinet. Public consultation will follow next year.


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