Commercial Fishing Licence Requirements

Commercial fishing boats

General Information

Commercial marine (saltwater) fishing licences vary according to the species being caught, and no new licences are presently being issued for most commercial fisheries. To conduct your business activities as a commercial fisher you may require a number of different licences so please read the information below carefully.

All commercial fishing licence enquiries should be directed in the first instance to the Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section. Ph: (03) 6165 3000. Application forms for commercial fishing licences are available on this site.

Many fishing business activities are also controlled by Codes of Practice, so check with your industry association for relevant codes.

Common Licences

  • The Master (Skipper) of a licensed fishing vessel or any person intending to sell fish caught from a licensed commercial fishing vessel must obtain a Fishing Licence (Personal). For further information contact the Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section.
  • Persons intending to operate a commercial fishing vessel must be the holder or supervisor of a Fishing Licence (Vessel). For further information contact the Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section.
  • Persons intending to take abalone, rock lobster, scallops, giant crab, scalefish, shellfish, seaweed, bull kelp or undaria must be the holder or a supervisor of a Commercial Fishing Licence for that species. For further information contact the Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section.
  • Persons intending to process abalone, rock lobster, giant crab, scallops, or over 10,000kg of any combination of other species per annum must do so under the authority of a Fish Processing Licence. For further information contact the Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section.
  • Persons dealing in rock lobster or giant crab but who do not process these species must have a Handling Licence. For further information contact the Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section.
  • Persons intending to conduct activities that contravene the Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995 (eg scientific research, the development of new fisheries or fishing technology) must obtain an exploratory permit.

Other Requirements

  • All commercial vessels require a Certificate of Survey from Marine and Safety Tasmania (Ph: 1300 135 513).
  • Deck hands may require a Certificate of Competency from Marine and Safety Tasmania (Ph: 1300 135 513).
  • Persons intending to be a Master, Skipper, Coxswain, Coxswain Limited, Coxswain Restricted, Engineer or Engine Driver on a commercial vessel must obtain a Certificate of Competency from Marine and Safety Tasmania (Ph: 1300 135 513).

Licence Requirements for Other Fishery Jurisdictions

  • Persons intending to fish commercially for shark, billfish or tuna must obtain a Commonwealth Statutory Fishing Right. Persons intending to fish commercially for Commonwealth managed species within the Australian Fishing Zone must obtain a Fishing Permit. For further information contact the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) Licensing and Entitlements Section (Ph: 02 6272 3357).

Related Information

  • To disturb or recover shipwrecks or relics, a Permit to Disturb or Recover Historic Shipwrecks/Relics is required from the Maritime Heritage Officer, Cultural Heritage Branch, Department of Tourism, Arts and the Environment (Ph: 03 6233 2387).
  • Persons intending to engage in activities within a protected zone, (an area within a prescribed radius of certain shipwrecks) must obtain a Permit to Undertake Prohibited Activity in Protected Zones from the Maritime Heritage Officer, Cultural Heritage Branch, Tourism Tasmania.
  • A permit is presently not required for the accidental killing, injuring or taking of cetaceans (whales, dolphins or porpoises) which occurs during the course of a licensed commercial fishing activity. For further information contact the Australian Department of Environment & Heritage, Marine Group, Marine Species Section (Ph: 02 6274 2730).
  • An Australian Shipping Registration Certificate is required for commercial passenger and cargo ships of 24 metres or more in length and all ships travelling overseas. Contact the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), (Ph: 02 6279 5921).
  • Masters and Navigational Watchkeepers who intend to work on vessels subject to Commonwealth jurisdiction must obtain a Certificate of Competency: Deck (AMSA) from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), Ship Operations and Qualifications (Ph: 03 6424 1597).
  • Ship engineers who intend to work on vessels subject to Commonwealth jurisdiction must obtain a Certificate of Competency: Engineer (AMSA) from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), Ship Operations and Qualifications (Ph: 03 6424 1597).
  • Persons intending to serve as a rating in deck and engine room departments of Australian ships on interstate or overseas voyages must obtain a Certificate of Proficiency as Integrated Rating (AMSA) from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), Ship Operations and Qualifications (Ph: 03 9685 5750).
  • Trading ships (passenger/cargo), fishing vessels and fishing fleet support vessels proceeding on an overseas voyage must obtain Survey and Certification (AMSA) from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), Maritime Operations (Ph: 03 6424 1597). Trading ships proceeding on an interstate voyage must also obtain this licence.
  • Persons intending to undertake any commercial or non-commercial activity in the Antarctic region should complete an Environmental Impact Assessment - Australian Antarctic Territory. For further information contact the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, Antarctic Division (Ph: 03 6232 3510).
  • Persons intending to undertake any activity within the Territory of Heard and McDonald Islands must obtain a Heard Island - Permit to Enter. For further information contact the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEPHA), Antarctic Division (Ph: 03 6232 3503).
Contact:
Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section
Marine Resources
GPO Box 44
HOBART TAS 7001
Ph: (03) 6165 3000 or 1300 368 550
Email: fishing.enquiries@dpipwe.tas.gov.au

 
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