New Zealand has committed to protecting and conserving the ocean at an international conference in New York this week, says the Conservation Minister.
Maggie Barry has been attending the United Nations conference, which unanimously agreed on new measures aimed at reversing the decline in ocean health.
She said she affirmed the government's commitment to establishing the Kermadec/Rangitahua Ocean Sanctuary, which at 620,000 square kilometres will be one of the largest fully protected areas in the world.
Ms Barry said New Zealand was seeking ambitious and effective rules on harmful fisheries subsidies that contribute to illegal fishing and overfishing.
She said the issue of marine debris caused by lost or discarded fishing gear was also being addressed, and New Zealand was contributing to a programme aimed at identifying practical solutions to the problem of ocean acidification.