March 05, 2015
New boats for Aotearoa fleet
Maori-owned Aoteroa Fisheries has embarked on a $30 million project to renew its contract fishing fleet.
The first of the 24 metre trawlers to be built by Nelson firm Aimex for a Tauranga-based family fishing business .
Aotearoa chief executive Carl Carrington says as a processing and marketing company Aotearoa does not need to own its own fleet, but it has the weight to help the fishers it works with buy boats.
He says by entering into a long term catch plan using quota owned or controlled by Aotearoa, RMD can demonstrate it can service the bank loans needed to buy the vessel.
Mr Carrington says while it may cost more to build the boats in New Zealand, it means Aimex can gear up to built two or three boats a year.
The state of the art vessel will be able to handle new nets that are now being developed that will land live fish on board, allowing a higher quality and more environmentally sustainable product.
It can also handle three times the volume of RSM's existing boats, which are 40 years old – the average age of New Zealand's inshore fishing fleet.
Construction will start in April, with a launch date early next year.
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