29 Jul 2016

Kermadec sanctuary 'confiscates' Māori fishing rights

2:13 pm on 29 July 2016

The organisation that manages Māori fishing assets has accused the government of confiscating fishing rights.

The CEO of Taranaki's largest corportate farmer and  former chief Treaty negotiator, Dion Tuuta

Dion Tuuta is also chief executive of Taranaki's largest corporate farmer and a former chief Treaty negotiator Photo: RNZ / Robin Martin

Te Ohu Kaimoana manages Māori fishing assets and is objecting to recommendations by a government select committee over fishing rights in the Kermadec region.

The planned sanctuary would protect marine life in more than 600,000 square kilometres around the Kermadec islands, which are just over 1000km northeast of Auckland.

Chief executive Dion Tuuta said the recommendations about a marine sanctuary in the region amounted to a confiscation of indigenous fishing rights.

Mr Tuuta said Te Ohu Kaimoana and the fishing industry had protected the seabed and biodiversity of the Kermadec region for almost a decade.

He said they had received no recognition for it from the government or the members of the select committee.

Te Ohu Kaimoana launched legal proceedings against the government over the sanctuary in March.