March 26, 2019
Iwi deal gives Sealord confidence
The operations manager for fishing company Sealord says a new long term agreement with iwi had allowed the company to invest in a new $75 million deepwater factory ship.
The Ngā Tapuwae o Maui agreement was signed with 36 iwi last night, another six iwi are considering joining.
Doug Paulin says it means for the life of the compact those iwi will get a major share of the profits generated by their deepwater quota, rather than just the market price for selling their annual catch entitlement at the start of each fishing year.
He says Sealord needs to catch and process its fish a long way off the coast.
"Sealord as part of knowing we were signing this agreement with iwi, we invested in a new fishing platform, Tokatū. That cost us just under $75 million for one vessel. That capital cost to actually be able to catch the fish is substantial. Otherwise, it's just not efficient," Mr Paulin says.
Sealord will report its progress and results to the Annual Māori Fisheries Conference and Te Ohu Kaimoana annual meeting in Tāmaki Mākaurau today and tomorrow.
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