Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash announced today a public consultation on proposed changes to strengthen the allocation and transfer process in the Maori Commercial Aquaculture Claims Settlement Act 2004.
"Some of the current requirements are preventing several iwi from accessing and developing their aquaculture settlement assets and the proposal outlines options to strengthen processes," says Stuart Nash.
"Tangata whenua have expressed that they would like to see better access for iwi to develop their aquaculture settlement assets.
"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, and improvements need to be made to support this development."
The proposal outlines 3 options to provide for the allocation and transfer process. This will also improve the delivery of the Crown's aquaculture settlement obligations and further assist iwi involvement in our growing aquaculture industry.
"Aquaculture contributes significantly to regional development. It generated over $600 million in revenue in 2018 and employed 3,000 people in the regions. There is great potential for aquaculture to enrich our economy and our global reputation with the Government, iwi and industry all coming together.
"Fisheries New Zealand and the Ministry for Primary Industries' officials will host 3 targeted meetings with Iwi Aquaculture Organisations and iwi with aquaculture interests in early December.
"The consultation is now open and I encourage you to have your say."