Chinese corruption crackdown hits New Zealand paua industry

Last updated 05:00 29/01/2014

Relevant offers

Industries

Chris Liddell's continued involvement in Next Foundation yet to be decided US withdrawal from TPP expected to impact NZ economy, businesses Foodstuffs one of world's largest retailers: Global Powers of Retailing report Number of foreign trusts declines ahead of new regulations Too old for IKEA: Study shows your age dictates where you go furniture shopping Agri-food co-ops worth $43 billion to NZ economy Samsung confirms Galaxy Note 7 batteries fault, announces response plan And, we are (almost) go for Kiwi Rocket launch in northern Hawke's Bay Dancing Sands toasts success from Kiwi products Mark Hotchin returns to New Zealand but critics say Hanover investors unlikely to forgive

New Zealand paua has gone on the banned list for high-flying Chinese tycoons anxious to avoid being caught up in corruption allegations.

Shark fins and bird nest soups are also falling into disfavour after Beijing launched an austerity drive against lavish banquets.

While the news has been good for sharks - the demand for fins has plummeted - New Zealand's biggest paua processor is suffering.

In its latest annual report, Aotearoa Fishing Ltd (AFL) said it had invested widely, from Bream Bay to Palmerston North, to farm and process paua.

Commenting on China, it said the fresh and frozen fish markets remained steady, with the pricing for main fish species remaining firm, and lobster sales remained robust despite Chinese austerity measures.

"It was, however, a very different story for our paua products, where sales have been affected by Chinese austerity measures," it said.

With the Chinese not eating paua, exporters were now pushing them into other Asian markets including Singapore and Hong Kong.

"Prices fell in response to increased supply."

AFL's prepared foods division claims to be the pioneer in processing New Zealand paua, the world's only black abalone.

Illegally caught paua is used as illicit currency in the criminal drug trade.

China's anti-corruption measures ban cigarettes and expensive liquor as well as classic Chinese delicacies like mooncakes, shark fins and birds' nests from official banquets.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has also ordered that in densely populated areas with scarce arable land, the bodies of party members and officials must be cremated rather than buried and headstones must be smaller. 

Ad Feedback

- BusinessDay

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content