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Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Cooks Cabinet Ministers want EU deal re-think

The Cook Islands Minister of Internal affairs, Albert Nicholas, says many people in his electorate are opposed to the planned purse seine fishing deal with the European Union. The US$6.5 million deal would grant access to four EU purse seiners to catch up to 7,000 tonnes of tuna a year in the Cooks' Exclusive Economic Zone. It has been widely criticised with the latest claims that the government has been advised by its own officials that the documents are fatally flawed. Mr Nicholas says he may take an information paper to cabinet outlining the opposition from his constituents to the fishing plan. His comments come after the Agriculture Minister, Kiriau Turepu, said an independent team from the private sector should have been identified at the outset to advise the government on the deal. The Prime Minister Henry Puna, who is also the Fisheries Minister, is adamant the EU deal is yet to be signed off.

Source: radionz.co.nz