[22 May/Stuff]

The Government has halted plans to put restrictions on deep sea trawling after the fishing industry threatened legal action. The plans were to protect the stocks of deep sea orange roughy and prevent the destruction of delicate seabed life like coral and sponges. The High Seas Fisheries lobby group wrote to the Government threatening legal action. David Parker sent officials to hear industry concerns. The proposal has been halted because Australia and New Zealand had not reached a final agreement on the conservation management measures. Deep Sea Conservation Coalition representative, Duncan Currie, said they were stunned when they heard the news and continued to be stunned. He noted there were no grounds for the legal action and the industry would be struggling to raise a case in New Zealand’s domestic courts. He added the Government had nothing to be concerned about.