PRIORITIES FOR THE NEXT THREE YEARS
Based on Government policy directions, our experience with current management approaches, and feedback from stakeholders, the Ministry of Fisheries has identified priorities for the next three years that will help us make progress in our strategic direction. Giving priority to these areas will better achieve the four contributing outcomes (Protect the health of the aquatic environment; Provide for best value; Deliver on obligations to Ma-ori; Credible fisheries management) and, through these, the overall fishery outcome. The initiatives listed under the priorities represent an ambitious three-year programme for the Ministry. Resources are limited and, therefore, further prioritisation and sequencing of initiatives will occur over the three years.
The priorities for the next three years are:
Leadership and collaboration
- Provide increased leadership in the fisheries sector
- Improve tangata whenua and stakeholder engagement
- Improve availability of information
Focus on achieving outcomes
- Improve the environmental performance of fishing
- Enhance value obtained by tangata whenua and stakeholders
Integration and accountability
- Increase focus on international fisheries issues
- Increase focus on management of the broader marine environment
- Improve monitoring and reporting on performance of fisheries
- Develop and implement new management approaches
Maintain the integrity of existing management systems
LEADERSHIP AND COLLABORATION
The Ministry will emphasise leadership and collaboration in its approach to fisheries management. Availability of relevant information is an integral part of enabling collaboration since it promotes transparency, accountability and better decisionmaking.
Provide increased leadership in the fisheries sector
The Ministry will assume a leadership role in the fisheries sector to:
- promote the contribution of the fisheries and aquaculture sector to the New Zealand economy and society
- work with other agencies to integrate fisheries management frameworks with those used in the broader marine environment
- provide leadership in developing mechanisms to address illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing in international fisheries.
Improve tangata whenua and stakeholder engagement
The Ministry will undertake the following initiatives to improve engagement with tangata whenua and fisheries stakeholders.
- establish and support regional forums of iwi and hapu- to enable regular engagement and provide for more effective input and participation into Ministry processes
- support the work of Pou Hononga (relationship management facilitators)
- expand the Ministry’s involvement in capacity building, and iwi and hapu- relationship facilitation to enable iwi and hapu- to have effective input and participation in sustainability processes.
Engagement with separate sectors:
- establish and support a ministerial advisory panel and regional forums to engage with recreational fishers
- meet regularly with environmental Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
- ehance the working relationship with the NZ Seafood Industry Council (SeaFIC) and Te Ohu Kai Moana Trustee Limited (TOKMTL) at a policy level
- rationalise existing regional stakeholder forums (eg Fisheries Liaison Committees)
- support the formation of representative stakeholder groups and their capacity to engage effectively in fisheries management.
- develop a strategy to improve ongoing relationships with fisheries stakeholders, including consultation
- improve the involvement of stakeholders and tangata whenua in processes to develop or review fisheries policies, management plans, and associated legal and compliance regimes
- enhance the involvement of fisheries stakeholders in the identification and resolution of compliance problems.
Improve availability of information
To improve availability of information, the Ministry will:
- expand the Ministry’s communication and public awareness programmes
- enhance NABIS (National Aquatic Biodiversity Information System) to build a comprehensive geographic information system (GIS) for fisheries and the marine environment
- develop a user-friendly, web-based report of performance in achieving outcomes, including measures such as the status of fisheries and the aquatic environment, and the value obtained from fisheries
- upgrade the Ministry website – www.fish.govt.nz – for improved access to information and compliance with E-Government standards
- improve transparency of, and stakeholder access to, information including fisheries policies, standards, management processes, fisheries services and decisions.
FOCUS ON ACHIEVING OUTCOMES
The Ministry will increase its focus on achieving outcomes. In particular, it will focus on improving environmental performance and the value stakeholders obtain from fisheries.
Improve the environmental performance of fishing
To improve the environmental performance of the fishing sector, the Ministry will undertake the following initiatives:
- implement the ‘Strategy for Managing the Environmental Effects of Fishing’, including by developing, implementing, and reviewing environmental standards specifying required levels of performance and acceptable levels of modification to fisheries and the aquatic environment, and developing mechanisms to achieve the standards
- ensure management plans (described below) include environmental objectives and measures to meet environmental standards
- continue to implement the National Plan of Action for Seabirds
- develop and implement the National Plan of Action for Sharks
- implement the ‘Marine Protected Areas Policy Statement and Implementation Plan’ in conjunction with the Department of Conservation, focusing initially on habitats and ecosystems at risk from fishing
- work with other departments to develop a comprehensive marine habitat classification system on which to base protection of marine habitats and ecosystems
- support the Department of Conservation in its development of Population Management Plans for New Zealand sealions, Maui dolphins and other protected species
- review the use of BMSY (the biomass that produces the maximum sustainable yield) as the key reference point in the management of fisheries
- in association with other agencies, undertake research into managing the effects of fishing on ecosystem function.
Enhance value obtained by tangata whenua and stakeholders
The Ministry will undertake the following initiatives to enhance tangata whenua and stakeholder value from fisheries.
- participate in the Government’s Growth and Innovation Framework (GIF) to help improve the economic performance of the New Zealand fisheries and aquaculture sector
- establish a forum to assist the aquaculture industry to develop a sector strategy
- work to secure access to high seas fisheries resources including through CCSBT (Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna), WCPFC (Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission), and CCAMLR (Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources)
- assist industry to obtain appropriate access to fisheries resources in the fisheries waters of other countries
- promote trade access for fish products and services
- encourage stakeholders to work together to take responsibility for achieving common goals
- review regulations and other interventions to reduce unnecessary compliance regulations and costs
- review the cost recovery framework.
- facilitate the appointment of Kaitiaki
- progress assessment of ma-taitai applications
- increase training and extension services to iwi and hapu
- review customary regulations.
- review key recreational regulations
- better define fisheries rights so that tangata whenua and fishery stakeholders can more easily work together towards common objectives.
- explore options to provide for non-extractive uses of fisheries either within fisheries legislation or in other marine legislation.
INTEGRATION AND ACCOUNTABILITY
To increase the value of fisheries to New Zealand, the Ministry will emphasise integration of our approaches to domestic and international fisheries, and integration of fisheries management and broader marine management issues. An outcomes and standards framework will help ensure the Ministry’s resources are clearly directed and used effectively. They will also promote accountability for performance.
Increase focus on international fisheries issues
The fisheries sector is increasingly globalised – what occurs in fisheries and markets in other parts of the world affects New Zealand fisheries. Access to fisheries in high seas areas and in the fisheries waters of other countries is an important element in the profitability of some New Zealand fishing companies. Fisheries issues also influence and are influenced by New Zealand’s broader relationships with other countries.
Therefore, it is important that New Zealand engages with other countries, both directly and through appropriate forums, to influence decision-making on international fisheries issues.
To increase our focus on international issues, the Ministry will undertake the following initiatives:
- develop an International Fisheries Strategy for New Zealand, setting out clear frameworks and policies to manage New Zealand’s international fisheries interests
- take a leadership role in establishing a Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (RFMO) for the Tasman Sea and South Pacific Ocean
- work actively within multilateral and regional forums including the United Nations, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation), APEC (Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation), and FFA (Forum Fisheries Agency) to promote strong governance arrangements for the sustainable management of international fisheries, including policies for managing the environmental effects of fishing
- work within RFMOs of which we are a member to secure well-defined access rights for the New Zealand fishing industry
- promote opportunities for secure market access for New Zealand fisheries products through, for example, free trade agreements, and input to the WTO (World Trade Organisation) processes
- promote responsible management practices for international fisheries
- assist other countries to improve management of fisheries through fisheries management advice and capacity building.
Increase focus on management of the broader marine environment
The Ministry intends to increase its commitment to engagement in whole-of-government policy initiatives aimed at improving institutional arrangements for resource management, including policy and legislative frameworks.
To increase our focus on management of the broader marine environment, the Ministry will undertake the following initiatives:
- work with other departments to better integrate management of the marine environment
- work with other government agencies to maximise the cost effectiveness of delivery of enforcement services
- work with the Department of Conservation on the review of the Coastal Policy Statement
- work with regional councils to improve management of impacts of non-fishing activities on the marine environment, including run-off and sedimentation.
Improve monitoring and reporting on performance of fisheries
Monitoring is necessary to assess whether, and how, the fisheries management framework and its implementation are contributing to New Zealand social, economic and cultural development. Monitoring includes the identification of appropriate performance indicators, collection and management of information to support monitoring, and the evaluation of this material.
Monitoring will occur at two levels:
Monitoring fisheries outcomes
Evaluation of the performance of fisheries management frameworks against specified fisheries outcomes will enable the Ministry to assess the need for adjustment and improvement of the frameworks.
Monitoring management plans
Evaluation of the performance of management plans (described below) against the plan’s objectives and relevant performance standards will enable the Ministry to assess the need for adjustment and improvement in the management measures and strategies.
To improve monitoring and reporting, the Ministry will undertake the following initiatives:
- develop a framework to monitor and evaluate performance
- develop performance indicators for fisheries management and major reforms
- monitor the performance indicators
- report the results of monitoring on a regular basis.
Examples of possible performance indicators are shown in the diagram overleaf.
Develop and implement new management approaches
The above priorities will affect how we manage fisheries. The Ministry intends to manage fisheries through the development and implementation of:
- an outcomes and standards framework
- an objectives-based approach to fisheries management.
Implementation of these new management approaches will ensure that management of fisheries, including management measures and provision of services, is linked clearly to fisheryspecific objectives that contribute to government outcomes and meet government standards.