Aquaculture and Fisheries

New Zealand First regards the fisheries and aquaculture sector as an important part of our regional economy, and a key contributor to export earnings. We favour a smart regulatory approach which recognises the critical role our primary sector will play in our post-COVID recovery. The quota management system is at the core of a robust framework for the ongoing management of this valuable resource.


  • Undertake a review of recreational catch limits and how we can improve our coastal fisheries to ensure we have quality inter-generational fisheries in the future
  • Investigate the establishment of a separate Fisheries and Aquaculture Service to be located in regional New Zealand.
  • Make $100m available to provide capital to Aquacorp as a way to de-risk ocean based marine farming
  • Deliver a fast-track statutory process for aquaculture consents with modest costs
  • Support initiatives to require all vessels fishing in New Zealand territorial and economic zone waters to be New Zealand flagged
  • Encourage maximum achievable crewing rates of fishing vessels through employing New Zealand citizens and permanent residents as a priority
  • Work towards ensuring that all fish caught in New Zealand waters are landed and processed in New Zealand. This includes territorial waters and the EEZ, applying to both local and foreign charter vessels
  • Continue to work towards a respectful and fair agreement with industry leaders and stakeholders such as Te Ohu Kaimoana for the creation of a Kermadec Reserve
  • Work closely with industry to establish a programme for fleet renewal using a mixture of tax depreciation and other fiscal measures
  • Support sectoral vocational training and trades, with preference to training on the job incentives
  • Focus and prioritise our trade advocacy efforts in fisheries and aquaculture
  • Ensure that any customary permits issued are regularly published to improve decision-making processes and promote confidence in the permit system
  • Support more fisheries officers in isolated rural areas
  • Invest $25m toward a Marine Biology Facility located in Tauranga