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New Zealand foreign fishing boat moves need to be quicker - critics by DANYA LEVY May 23,2012   |  Source:

The New Zealand government's move to ban foreign-flagged fishing boats is being criticised for being so slow that further abuse of international crew members could occur before they are in place.

Foreign-chartered vessels working for New Zealand-owned companies and operating in New Zealand waters will have four years to reflag as New Zealand ships, requiring them to meet local requirements and standards, under a government decision announced yesterday.

Concerns about the treatment of foreign workers intensified after 32 Indonesian crew on the Korean Oyang 75 last year walked off the fishing boat alleging sexual and physical abuse.

The changes will affect the 12 out of 27 New Zealand fishing companies which use foreign-chartered ships and are expected to impact on them financially, although the Government has not conducted a cost analysis.

Primary Industries Minister David Carter said other countries, with the exception of Brazil and Namibia, had already banned foreign-flagged ships.

The Government also hoped the changes would encourage more use of New Zealand crews.

Maritime lawyer Peter Dawson said the changes were commendable but four years was too long and the boats should be required to be reflagged within two years.

''There are no interim measures to


© 2012 Fairfax New Zealand Limited

Theme(s): Fishing Craft, Gear and Fishing Methods.

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