The fisheries department announced via email that the Minister has decided to set the abalone TAC at 150 tons for the 2011/2012 season - the same as for the 2010/2011 season. It is unclear whether the Minister's decision on the abalone TAC, which precedes an announcement on the lobster TAC even though the lobster season opens on 15 October 2011 for Zone A (Port Nolloth), is in response to the protest action and demands by abalone right holders yesterday (13 October). She will undoubtedly deny that this is the case.
The department has also hurriedly convened an abalone management working group for 19 October 2011 having previously postponed an initial working group meeting indefinitely.
It is understood that although many right holders in Zones E and G are pleased with the announcement, they still want the Minister to respond to the issues raised in the Memorandum handed to her Acting Deputy Director-General of Fisheries on 13 October 2011.