The National Party says people for whom whitebaiting is their livelihood are worried the Conservation Minister is going to ban whitebaiting altogether.

The Indigenous Freshwater Act passed last month allows restrictions to be placed on catching at-risk species.

National's conservation spokesperson, Sarah Dowie, said there's been 'pseudo-consultation' with the sector, and the minister, Eugenie Sage, is not being transparent about possible changes with financial implications.

"What they're saying is that they want to be included, they want to be directly consulted as stakeholders and that they believe they can come up with a way forward that meets the needs of everyone."

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Ms Sage said any changes would not come into force any earlier than two years from now, and there will be public consultation.

- RNZ