Dedicated body for fisheries management

The creation of a dedicated body to be known as Fisheries New Zealand marks a major milestone on the way to improved management of this valuable natural resource, says Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash.

The reorganisation of the Ministry for Primary Industries will create four new branches with a specific focus on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety.

Mr Nash says the changes strike the optimum balance between enhancing fisheries management while minimising disruption to staff and operations within MPI.

“The establishment of Fisheries New Zealand is a tightly focused change which will go a long way towards improving public confidence in the way fisheries are managed.

“The reorganisation provides clearer lines of accountability for fisheries management decisions.

“It means that as Minister I can have confidence in the way fisheries officials carry out government policy. It means that the many individuals, agencies, iwi and businesses with a stake in fisheries have a clear picture of accountability within the sector.

“It also means Fisheries New Zealand can be upfront about its work and its expectations for how the fisheries resource is harvested and protected.   

“The new body will work to strengthen relationships with iwi, recreational and commercial fishing representatives, the environmental sector and other local communities,” Mr Nash says.

“The need to ensure the sustainability of fisheries stocks and to minimise the environmental impacts of fishing are important concerns for all of us. Fisheries New Zealand is expected to lead efforts in these areas.

“The changes announced today are an important first step towards ensuring a sustainable and abundant fishery,” Mr Nash says.