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Maori Fisheries & Aquaculture

Oceanlaw New Zealand is proud to be a sponsor of the annual Māori Fisheries Conference.

2004 was a land-mark year in the development of iwi Maori commercial fisheries: the passage into law of the Maori Fisheries Act and Maori Commercial Aquaculture Claims Settlement Act created not only the potential for significant assets to flow back into iwi hands but also tremendous challenges in terms of implementation, including the need for many iwi to change their legal structures

The two pieces of legislation create a number of new entities, including Te Ohu Kai Moana Trustee Ltd and the Maori Commercial Aquaculture Claims Settlement Trust, and various new processes, including dispute resolution processes through the Maori Land Court.

The impact of these reforms will be felt through the whole of the fishing and aquaculture industries – not only iwi themselves, but also their joint venture and business partners will need to understand and work within the appropriate statutory framework. The result is that, while intimately related to more general areas of fisheries and aquaculture law, Maori fisheries and aquaculture are now specialist areas in their own right.

Oceanlaw New Zealand can provide clients with not only technical expertise in these areas of law, but experience in working with iwi governors, managers and fishers.

Our services in this field include:

  • Developing iwi constitutions/trust deeds which meet the unique needs of each iwi, while complying with Maori Fisheries Act requirements and maximising commercial efficiency
  • Advising on Maori Fisheries Act processes, including recognition of Mandated Iwi Organisation status
  • Assistance in negotiation of coastal boundary agreements
  • Representation and advice in respect of Maori Land Court dispute resolution processes
  • Advice on ACE and ITQ management and transfers, including the Maori Fisheries Act restrictions on disposal of settlement assets
  • Joint venture arrangements
  • Customary fisheries advice
  • General fisheries management and policy advice and advocacy
  • General aquaculture law and specialist advice on the Maori Commercial Aquaculture
    Claims Settlement – see Aquaculture Law

For more information please contact Justine Inns