14 Nov 2009

Fisheries negotiators struggle to agree on interim measures

11:18 am on 14 November 2009

Fisheries negotiators have been struggling to agree on interim measures to protect non-tuna deep sea fisheries, before a new international treaty for South Pacific waters is adopted.

Delegates from 27 countries have been meeting in Auckland this week to establish a South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management organisation, spanning the seas from Western Australia to Chile and Peru.

Tim Graham reports.

"Talks continued into last night to hammer out the rules for catching overfished species like Jack Mackerel in the period before the treaty comes into force. That could be up to three years away, though it's hoped the treaty's text can be formally adopted today. New Zealand's lead negotiator, Gerard van Bohemen says Russia, Peru and China are among those resisting moves to set catch allocations in the lag-time before the Treaty kicks in. Cath Wallace from the Environment and Conservation Organisations says allocations must be set to avoid ecology disturbance and serious stock declines."