New Zealand targets problems aboard fishing boats

New Zealand’s government says it is introducing new rules to address workplace problems aboard foreign-owned fishing vessels.

Academic and media reports in recent years have detailed appalling conditions and abusive labor practices aboard some foreign-flagged fishing vessels operating in New Zealand waters. Those reports prompted the government last year to launch an inquiry.

On Tuesday, the government announced that by 2016, it will require all foreign-owned fishing vessels to “reflag” in New Zealand, making them subject to stricter local rules governing workplace conditions and wages.

Until then, the government says it will step up vessel monitoring by placing observers aboard all foreign-owned fishing vessels.

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