Luxton Hopes to Visit West Coast Fishers on 43 Metre Rule

  • John Luxton
Fisheries and Aquaculture

Minister of Fisheries, Hon John Luxton today said he had been invited to visit the West Coast to talk directly with concerned fishers regrading suggested changes to the 43 metre rule.

Mr Luxton said today, "I have always said I am happy to listen to the industry. While we have many months of consultation with industry before any possible changes are made to the 43 metre rule, if I can, I hope to be able to visit the West Coast to talk directly with fishers sometime in the new year."

This follows the Minister meeting a delegation of fishers from the West Coast of the South Island in his Wellington office today. They were expressing concerns over suggestions to change the way vessels are measured, and how far from shore such vessels can fish.

The process for making these amendments will include consultation with fisheries stakeholder groups and iwi. Discussion on the definition of vessel length will occur during December and January with any changes introduced on 1 April 1998.

The proposed removal of the prohibited trawl areas, outside the 12 mile Territorial Sea, will be discussed in the middle of next year with possible changes introduced on 1 October 1998.