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Proposal to improve the allocation and transfer process provided in the Maori Commercial Aquaculture Claims Settlement Act 2004

Have your say

Aquaculture contributes significantly to regional development, generating over $600 million in revenue in 2018, and employing 3,000 people in the regions. There is great potential for aquaculture to enrich our global reputation with the Government, iwi and industry all coming together.

Iwi have an important role in New Zealand’s sustainable and innovative aquaculture sector as they continue to acquire and develop their interests in the industry. Improvements need to be made to support this development.

Fisheries New Zealand is seeking feedback on options to improve the allocation and transfer process provided in the Maori Commercial Aquaculture Claims Settlement Act 2004. The aim is to ensure iwi can access their aquaculture settlement assets.

Further details on the proposal are in the discussion paper. Hearing the views of the public and iwi in particular will help us understand the possible impacts of the proposal. Feedback on the proposed options and any other proposal you might have would be greatly appreciated.

The consultation runs from 28 November 2019 to 20 February 2020.

Discussion paper

Discussion document [PDF, 1 MB]

Related documents

Questions and answers [PDF, 439 KB]

Media release: Views sought on strengthening iwi aquaculture claims processes

Cabinet paper [PDF, 1.1 MB]

Cover letter [PDF, 251 KB]

What's being proposed?

The Maori Commercial Aquaculture Settlement Act 2004 provides for the full and final settlement of Māori commercial aquaculture claims since 21 September 1992. The Act delivers this settlement through providing settlement assets to Te Ohu Kaimoana Trustee Limited (the Trustee) for distribution to Iwi Aquaculture Organisations.

Fisheries New Zealand is looking at a proposal to improve the allocation and transfer process provided in the Act to better enable the allocation and transfer of aquaculture settlement assets to iwi.

There are 3 proposed options.

Option 1

Maintaining the status quo

Option 2

Providing additional resources towards facilitating regional agreements

Option 3

Amending the Settlement Act to provide Te Ohu Kaimoana with a limited discretionary power to allocate and transfer aquaculture settlement assets in circumstances where:

  • it has not been possible for all iwi in a region to conclude a formal agreement on allocation of the assets for a particular settlement; or
  • the dispute resolution process provided for in the Settlement Act (which includes reference to the Māori Land Court) has been unable to resolve the issue.

Making your submission

You can send us your feedback online, by email, or post. Submissions close at 5pm on 20 February 2020. All submissions received by the closing date will be considered.


Complete our online form – SurveyMonkey

Use the comment boxes for each question to tell us your feedback.



Use our submission template to help you give feedback.

Submission template [PDF, 419 KB]


While we prefer email, you can post written submissions to:

Consultation: Maori Commercial Aquaculture Claims Settlement Act 2004
Ministry for Primary Industries
PO Box 2526
Wellington 6104. 

What to include in your submission

Make sure you include:

  • the title of the consultation document
  • your name and title
  • your organisation's name (if you are submitting on behalf of an organisation, and whether your submission represents the whole organisation or a section of it)
  • your contact details (such as phone number, address, and email).

Targeted Meetings 

As part of the consultation, we will be presenting the proposal at meetings of iwi aquaculture organisations and iwi with aquaculture interests in 3 North Island locations.

  • Monday, 2 December (Bay of Plenty)
  • Wednesday, 4 December (Northland)
  • Wednesday, 11 December (Auckland)

Submissions are public information

Note, that any submission you make becomes public information. People can ask for copies of submissions under the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA). The OIA says we have to make submissions available unless we have good reasons for withholding them.  That is explained in sections 6 and 9 of the OIA.

Tell us if you think there are grounds to withhold specific information in your submission. Reasons might include that it's commercially sensitive or it's personal information. However, any decision MPI makes to withhold information can be reviewed by the Ombudsman, who may tell us to release it.

MPI may post all or parts of any written submission on its website. We'll consider that you have consented to its publication, unless clearly stated otherwise in your submission.