Gunner Govt Changes Northern Territory Barramundi Fishery Management Plan

Gunner Govt Changes Northern Territory Barramundi Fishery Management Plan

Northern Territory Minister for Primary Industry and Resources Ken Vowles

Territory Waterways Protected From Cross-River Barra Netting

Victor P Taffa

Territorians deserve a government that listens and acts, as the Gunner Northern Territory Government has done by changing the Northern Territory Barramundi Fishery Management Plan.

Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, Ken Vowles, said that with the support of the fishing community, the Plan has been updated to improve regulations regarding professional barramundi nets.

“Fishing is important to the Territory economy and lifestyle, and the Northern Territory Government is investing $50 Million in the recreational fishing sector.” Minister Vowles said.

“We want people to enjoy fishing in the Territory. That means providing access, which is why it is an offence to block waterways by setting barramundi nets across more than 50 % of their width. However, it became clear last year a loophole in regulations meant some rivers were excluded from this rule. We have closed that loophole.”

Northern Territory Seafood Council CEO Katherine Winchester said the professional fishing industry was behind the move.

“Professional fishers fish Northern Territory waterways responsibly and care for the long-term sustainability of our fisheries, hence their involvement in and support of this change,” Ms. Winchester said.

Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the NT (AFANT) Executive Officer David Ciaravolo said common sense had prevailed.

“This change brings regulations into line with community expectations and is an example of how a range of stakeholders can get together to come up with a solution.” Mr. Ciaravolo said.

Others supportive of the move include the Barramundi Licensee Committee, Northern Territory Guided Fishing Industry Association and Northern Land Council.

Minister Vowles said the change had taken place in time for the start of the 2018 professional barramundi season.

“We responded quickly to calls for change and, from February 1, this law now applies to all Territory waterways open to the commercial Barramundi Fishery.” Minister Vowles said.