• John Luxton
Fisheries and Aquaculture

Fisheries Minister, the Hon John Luxton today announced the fisheries cost recovery levies and transactions charges for the 1999/2000 fishing year beginning on 1 October 1999.

The levies and charges will collect $34.5 million from the fishing industry for fisheries management, fisheries research and related costs. Levies for conservation services are due to be announced in September.

The levies are set according to the services that are provided to the industry. This year the fishing industry has agreed to support additional research.

"Yesterday Cabinet approved changes in fisheries cost recovery rules which is expected to reduce levies by around $4.9 million each fishing year. We now have a platform from which to move forward to create more prosperity for both the country and the industry. While the Cabinet decision is still subject to consultation with all stakeholders, the reduction will be backdated to 1 October 1999."

This year's consultation round on cost recovery has also resulted in the establishment of a joint working group to identify ways of resolving the issue of over and under recovery of levies.

"The working group will be expected to recommend a methodology by 31 March 2000 for application to the 2000/2001 cost recovery levy order. As the cost recovery example shows, it is clear that industry and the Ministry of Fisheries can achieve good results when they work together. I look forward to the same success with this working group", Mr Luxton concluded.