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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 39, Number 24, September 27, 1976.

Action Needed Now

Action Needed Now

The only spark of action from the government was the announcement in the budget of a tax on foreign fishing vessels which visit New Zealand ports. But the government has made it plain (in answer to questions in Parliament) that this is a purely fiscal measure and is not protective or conservational in character. In fact the big two, the USSR and Japan, are both capable of operating independently of port facilities and will be unaffected by the measure.

The willingness of the government to join the third world countries in their struggle for control of their national resources will be reflected in its attitude to the planned 200 mile zone. At the moment it is avoiding the hard decisions. It is shooting at Taiwanese intruders but taking no action against worse intrusions of our territorial waters by Russian and Japanese vessels. Time is running out.

"Our administrators now as never before will have to justify the wisdom of their decisions, not only to themselves but to the people of New Zealand. A considerable depth of interest and concern in this matter is evident among the public, and woebetide the authors of any decisions that are not patriotic and just." P.J. Stevens, President, Wellington Trawlermens Association, Commercial Fishing, August 1976).