Fisheries Infosite

Region - Central (East) (FMA2)

Key statistics
Recreational significance High
Customary significance High
Environmental importance High
Reported commercial catch1 (tonnes)
Quota value estimate2 (NZ$m)
Exports estimate2 (NZ$m)
1 Reported commercial catch is calculated for the 12 month period to 30/09/2025
2 Quota value and exports are calculated pro-rata to reported commercial catch for the 12 month period to 30/09/2025
Regional characteristics
Area 459,000 km2
Coastline 1,130 kms
Productivity Medium
Climate Temperate-sub-tropical
Total population2 620,000
Tangata Whenua2 108,000
Recreational fishers (est. 20%) 124,000
2 Census 2006
Communities throughout the Central East Region have long fishing histories and close connections to the coast and sea.

The Central East region extends from Cape Runaway on the top of the East Cape to Titahi Bay north of Wellington on the west coast.  Historically the region’s fisheries were an important source of food and recreation for early generations. Many in the region still carry on these traditions today.

As well as being valuable to locals, the region’s fisheries are enjoyed by visitors from across New Zealand and overseas. North Islanders, in particular, flock to the area over summer, drawn by the hot, sunny days, beaches and bountiful seafood.

The region also has a strong commercial fishing history and has nationally significant tarakihi, paua and rock lobster fisheries.

To find out about the region’s aquaculture, visit

Iconic species
Image drawing for Tarakihi (TAR)