Aquaculture for all

National Pledges Support For Sustainable Fisheries

Sustainability Economics Politics +4 more

NEW ZEALAND - The New Zealand National Party (National) will encourage investment in New Zealand's world-leading fisheries and the marine farming sector to boost economic growth, Fisheries and Aquaculture spokesman Phil Heatley commented.

"Our fisheries and aquaculture industries are increasingly important parts of New Zealand's exports," says Mr Heatley. "We've freed aquaculture of cumbersome red tape and we're helping Kiwi businesses to thrive on the strength of their innovation - that's why National has an ambitious goal of helping aquaculture become a $1 billion industry by 2025.

"New Zealand already has a great reputation as a source of high-quality seafood for our own recreational fishers, as well as the domestic and international marketplace. National will ensure our fishing industry is well-supported so it can step up and take advantage of the opportunities afforded by world-wide demand for best-quality, sustainably-caught seafood."

"National will streamline regulation around freshwater aquaculture, will aid the implementation of our aquaculture reforms, and will help councils open new marine farming sites in practical areas."

"We will also look at new, higher-value species for marine farming, like hapuku and kingfish," says Mr Heatley. "Currently, just three species are extensively farmed, and these alone are worth almost $300 million in exports each year. We need to extend farming to other in-demand species."

Mr Heatley says ensuring the sustainability of New Zealand's fisheries is vital for commercial and recreational fishers alike.

"We will continue to set responsible catch limits to help protect our valuable fish stocks. National will also continue its unrelenting effort to combat poaching and illegal taking of high-value species, such as paua and crayfish. Already, we have beefed up the number of frontline fisheries officers to make sure catch sizes and limits are complied with."

"New Zealand has one of the world's best-managed, sustainable fisheries. National has achieved excellent balance between environmental responsibility and economic opportunities in managing our world-class fishery, and we are committed to ensuring this balance is maintained as we help our fisheries and aquaculture industries grow," says Mr Heatley.