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Seafood industry calls for a Government inquiry into foreign-owned fishing vessels
The New Zealand Seafood Industry Council has today asked the Government to conduct an inquiry monitoring labour conditions and general compliance of foreign-owned fishing vessels operating in New Zealand waters.
“The New Zealand seafood industry has robust employment practices that comply with New Zealand labour legislation and we are concerned that recent allegations about practices on board some foreign-owned vessels are undermining the reputation of the sector,” says New Zealand Seafood Industry Council chief executive Peter Bodeker.
“We believe that a Government-led inquiry will help establish the facts in relation to general compliance and labour practices on board foreign vessels, and credibly identify any need for change or improvement.”
Mr Bodeker said that the industry, in conjunction with the Department of Labour, developed a Code of Practice on Foreign Fishing Crew in 2006. Under the Code, the range of employment matters, including employment agreements, must align with New Zealand standards, minimum working and living conditions and reporting requirements.
“The industry strongly supports the 2006 Industry Code of Practice on Foreign Fishing Crew and does not condone any breaches of the code.
“The seafood industry has a vital role to play in New Zealand’s economy and the ongoing confidence of the New Zealand public and our international partners in the sector is critical for the long-term credibility and success of our industry,” says Mr Bodeker.
Source: New Zealand Seafood Industry Council"
WorldFishingToday d. 01-08-2011