David Cunliffe |
Monday, June 17, 2013 – 09:46
Fisheries Minister Nathan Guy may be considering reducing the recreational snapper take, while backing off a proposed reduction in the commercial quota – an unfair and untenable position, says Labour Fisheries Spokesperson David Cunliffe.
“Saving the precious northern snapper fishery and rebuilding it to a healthy, sustainable level must be a shared responsibility.
“Getting a feed of snapper for the family is a tradition that Kiwis hold dear.
“Reports that a Ministry for Primary Industries discussion paper is likely to propose big cuts to the recreational bag limit but no change to the commercial quota have outraged recreational fishers.
“The Snapper 1 fishery, covering the north east coast of the North Island and the Hauraki Gulf, is the most popular and important recreational fishery nationwide.
“We want an even better fishery to be there for future generations. We support rebuilding the stock. But we believe that the necessary restraint should be shared equitably between all fishing categories.
“It is untenable for recreational limits to be reduced while the commercial catch remains unchanged.
“Current snapper stocks in the Hauraki Gulf and Eastern Northland are well below target. They are 24% of natural biomass, below the agreed target of 40%. The Bay of Plenty fishery is at only 6% of original levels.
“Labour is committed to a sustainable snapper fishery that supports an enduring recreational take and a strong, sustainable commercial sector. Getting there means everyone must play their part,” David Cunliffe said.