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Consultation on the draft Pāua Fisheries Plan for PAU7

Update – 10 July 2023

Fisheries plan for the Nelson/Marlborough pāua fishery (PAU 7) approved

The Minister for Oceans and Fisheries has approved a commercial fisheries plan for the Nelson/Marlborough pāua fishery under section 11A of the Fisheries Act 1996. 

The plan was developed by the PAU 7 Industry Association Incorporated (PauaMAC7) on behalf of all quota owners, ACE (annual catch entitlement) holders, and commercial harvesters. It allows for a more responsive and localised management approach of this important shared pāua fishery.

In 2020, the previous minister only endorsed the plan. Subsequent discussions were held, leading to the plan receiving an approved status under the Act.

The approved plan will operate under Fisheries New Zealand’s existing management settings, within the constraints of the Total Allowable Commercial Catch (TACC) and adhering to the minimum legal‑size limit (MLS). The plan formalises many of the voluntary measures already in place for this commercial fishery.

By approving the plan, the minister must take it into account before setting or varying any sustainability measure for each pāua fishery.

Pāua fisheries plan for PAU 7 [PDF, 685 KB]

Consultation background

Fisheries New Zealand sought your input into the draft Pāua Fisheries Plan for PAU7. It was developed by the industry representative body PauaMAC7 on behalf of all PAU7 quota owners and harvesters, and with the involvement and support of local iwi and recreational fishing representatives. 

The PAU7 area

PAU7 is the pāua fishery at the top of the South Island. It extends from the mouth of the Clarence River on the east coast northwards around the top of the South Island and down to Kahurangi Point on the west coast. The fishery is highly valued by customary, commercial and recreational fishers. In 2019, PauaMAC7 began developing a draft fisheries plan for PAU7 for consideration under section 11A of the Fisheries Act 1996. Under this section of the Act, the Minister of Fisheries may approve a fisheries plan including objectives, strategies, and performance criteria, to support the purpose and principles of the Act.

See a map of the PAU7 area 

Consultation document

Draft Pāua Fisheries Plan for PAU7 [PDF, 678 KB]

What was proposed

Voluntary arrangements have been part of the pāua industry's management and decision-making in the PAU7 fishery for many years. The pāua industry sought support for making these arrangements more formal by developing a fisheries plan for consideration under section 11A of the Fisheries Act 1996.

The draft plan aimed to achieve more responsive and finer-scale management through:

  • boosting the rate of stock rebuild using the mechanism of ACE shelving
  • controlling commercial fishing activity at a sub-QMA level, including catch spreading and variable minimum harvest sizes
  • enhancing local pāua populations using techniques such as out-planting and translocation.

Map of the PAU7 area

Map showing the PAU 7 area shaded in purple.


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