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MARINE

Review of kahawai deferred to next year

Wednesday 9 July 2008, 5:08PM
By Hon Jim Anderton
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Sustainable catch limits, allocations between fishing sectors and recreational fishing bag limits for the kahawai fishery will be reviewed in 2009, Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton announced today.

“The management of our kahawai fishery has been controversial. There is competition between commercial, customary and recreational fishers for their share of the catch and this has lead to conflict and court action” said Jim Anderton.

In 2004 kahawai was introduced into the quota management system and initial allocations were made between the three sectors by the Minister of Fisheries at the time. In 2005 catch limits were reduced due to continuing sustainability concerns.

In 2006 recreational fishers sought a judicial review of the then-Minister’s decisions. Following the High Court’s judgment, both commercial and recreational fishers appealed aspects of the decision to the Court of Appeal, which in turn issued its judgment on 11 June 2008.

The Crown has already agreed that catch limits and allowances for all kahawai stocks would be reviewed at the next opportunity in light of the decisions of the High Court and Court of Appeal.

“There is simply not enough time left to carry out these reviews, adequately consult, and make fresh decisions in time for the start of the new fishing year on 1 October,” Jim Anderton said.

“There is new information to gather and consider and there must be an opportunity for fishers and the general public to have their say. With the recent history of this fishery and the complexity of the issues, this is not a process I am prepared to rush.”

“I have said previously that the government will accept the Court’s judgment on the kahawai fishery. That still stands. We will not appeal or challenge any rulings and we will implement them as quickly as we can.”
Review of kahawai deferred to next year
Sustainable catch limits, allocations between fishing sectors and recreational fishing bag limits for the kahawai fishery will be reviewed in 2009, Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton announced today.

“The management of our kahawai fishery has been controversial. There is competition between commercial, customary and recreational fishers for their share of the catch and this has lead to conflict and court action” said Jim Anderton.

In 2004 kahawai was introduced into the quota management system and initial allocations were made between the three sectors by the Minister of Fisheries at the time. In 2005 catch limits were reduced due to continuing sustainability concerns.

In 2006 recreational fishers sought a judicial review of the then-Minister’s decisions. Following the High Court’s judgment, both commercial and recreational fishers appealed aspects of the decision to the Court of Appeal, which in turn issued its judgment on 11 June 2008.

The Crown has already agreed that catch limits and allowances for all kahawai stocks would be reviewed at the next opportunity in light of the decisions of the High Court and Court of Appeal.

“There is simply not enough time left to carry out these reviews, adequately consult, and make fresh decisions in time for the start of the new fishing year on 1 October,” Jim Anderton said.

“There is new information to gather and consider and there must be an opportunity for fishers and the general public to have their say. With the recent history of this fishery and the complexity of the issues, this is not a process I am prepared to rush.”

“I have said previously that the government will accept the Court’s judgment on the kahawai fishery. That still stands. We will not appeal or challenge any rulings and we will implement them as quickly as we can.”