Foreign fishing crew rules tightened

MICHAEL FIELD
Last updated 14:50 17/12/2012

Relevant offers

Politics

Government changes will have "almost no impact" on medium term immigration: ASB War veteran's epic pension fight has taken its toll, the 80-year-old's daughter says Nick Smith reflects on 'small reduction in responsibilities' after cabinet reshuffle Peter Dunne: Unified fire agency will emphasise flexibility Malcolm McKinnon: Anzac Day 2017 – time to lower the flag? Cabinet reshuffle sees Waikato get two more minsters Brownlee already in diplomatic mode Gerry Brownlee exits Christchurch a controversial, contrary figure Brownlee gets foreign affairs, but Smith's demotion on drip-feed Red Cross nurse in the line of fire

Immigration New Zealand has introduced what it calls tough new rules to protect foreign crews aboard foreign charter fishing vessels (FCVs).

The rules come follow publicity around widespread near-slave conditions aboard FCVs, which fish a large part of New Zealand's deep ocean quota.

Many crews were physically and sexually abused, served in appalling conditions and often were neither paid properly or when they were, had major deductions made from their wages.

After the revelations the Government set up a ministerial inquiry into FCVs and announced that by 2016 all of them would have to be re-flagged to New Zealand.

Immigration Minister Nathan Guy said the new rules would mean the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment could strengthen its monitoring and enforcement arrangements.

"The changes will mean better protection for employees and closer monitoring of employers. Importantly, each crew member must now have an individual bank account available so that wage payments can be made directly to them in New Zealand," Guy said.

Changes include requiring employers who recruit seven or more foreign crew to first apply for Approval in Principle to recruit foreign crew from the government.

The manning agents in countries like Indonesia would now be paid by the employer recruiting crews, not by crew members seeking jobs.

"These rules are contained in a new set of Immigration Instructions, which replace the Code of Practice for Foreign Fishing Crew," Guy said.

The new rules would be implemented as quickly as possible and would operate alongside the reflagging.

"This will mean these vessels will be subject to the full range of New Zealand law, including employment relations and workplace health and safety law."

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should the speed limit be raised to 110kmh on some roads?

Yes

No

Vote Result

Related story: 110kmh limit moves closer

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content