Local disappointment over further Cook Island purse seining allocations

A Cook Island environmental organisation is disappointed by further allocations of purse seining by the Government.

The government has access agreements with two Korean based purse seine fishing companies, Silla Co Ltd and Dongwon Fisheries Ltd, and the New Zealand company Talley's Fisheries, all of which have been assigned days within the country's 1,250 day quota.

Te Ipukarea Society's technical director, Kelvin Passfield says the public had only been told of one Korean company and the government agreed to consult on an agreement with the European Union

He said he only found out about the latest agreements in a television interview with the Secretary of Marine Resources.

Passfield said over 4,000 Cook Islanders have signed a petition to ban purse seining which has been presented to parliament.

"We were very disappointed to hear via this interview that it sounds like they've issued more licenses and fishing days to other purse seine companies despite the fact that more than half the population have just told them no thank you very much we don't want that. So to us it just shows that they don't really care what the people think, Passfield told Radio New Zealand International.