All foreign charter fishing vessels (FCVs) are required to reflag to New Zealand and operate under full legal jurisdiction of New Zealand from May 1, 2016, in order to keep fishing in kiwi waters, said Nathan Guy, the New Zealand Minister for Primary Industries.
According to the Fisheries (Foreign Charter Vessels and Other Matters) Bill of New Zealand passed in 2014, foreign-owned vessels fishing in New Zealand's Exclusive Economic Zone should flagged to New Zealand to ensure the NZ government had jurisdiction over areas including employment, health and safety conditions.
Guy said in a statement that nine foreign charter vessels have been reflagged, three are in the process of reflagging and cannot fish in New Zealand waters until then, and around nine have decided not to fish in New Zealand waters.
The nine reflagged vessels are from Japan, South Korea, Ukraine and the Commonwealth of Dominica.
"This is a new era for fishing vessels operating in New Zealand waters and will help ensure fair standards for all fishing crews working in our waters," said Guy.
The New Zealand government made the changes of fishing vessel requirements after a ministerial review in 2012 on ill-treatment to crews on some foreign-owned vessels fishing in New Zealand.
Other measures, which have already introduced, included compulsory New Zealand bank accounts for crew members, observers on board all foreign-owned vessels, and independent audits of charter parties to ensure crew visa requirements are being adhered to.