The popular Discovery Channel ‘Shark Week’, is a timely reminder of the work that the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is doing to conserve and manage shark numbers in New Zealand waters.
With responsibility for fisheries management, MPI plays a key role in ensuring the effective management of sharks as set out in the National Plan of Action for the Conservation and Management of Sharks (NPOA-Sharks), adopted at the start of the year.
MPI is also responsible for monitoring and enforcing the total ban on shark finning that came into effect on 1 October this year.
Dave Turner, Director of Fisheries Management said: “MPI estimates that 113 separate species of shark are active in New Zealand waters. Although many species can be caught under the New Zealand quota management scheme, some are fully protected. In addition the criminal and wasteful practice of shark finning is totally banned for all shark species.
“I am very pleased that this ban has been accepted so readily by commercial and recreational fishers who all have an interest in ensuring a well managed, and sustainable fisheries for the future.
“New Zealand is committed to supporting UN plans for the conservation and long term sustainability of sharks and I am satisfied that MPI has an effective system in place to manage the future sustainability of sharks in New Zealand waters.
More information on the MPI policy on shark conservation and management can be found here http://www.fish.govt.nz/en-nz/Environmental/Sharks/default.htm
Regulations relating to shark finning can be found here http://www.fish.govt.nz/en-nz/Environmental/Sharks/Eliminating+shark+finning+in+New+Zealand.htm