COVID-19 Fisheries Assistance

The Government is taking action to support the fishing industry struggling with the impacts of COVID-19 and will provide an additional $1.8 million for fisheries fees and licence relief.

This will include fee relief for the following fisheries over the next 12 months:

  • Wild fisheries licence fees, for example commercial dive, scallops and fishing vessel ($604,000); and
  • Annual fees for rock lobster, giant crab, scalefish fisheries and abalone divers ($3.7 million).

This initiative is in addition to the 12-month waiver for annual fees for Rock Lobster, Giant Crab, Wild Capture Fin Fisheries and Abalone Divers, which has a full cost of $3.7 million.

This brings the total Government support for the fishing industry to $5.5 million.


What is being offered to Wild Capture Fisheries?

Payment waivers for licence fees for the next 12 months are being offered to licence holders in the following Tasmanian commercial fisheries:

  • Abalone Dive
  • Australian Salmon
  • Automatic Squid Jig
  • Banded Morwong
  • Beach Seine A
  • Beach Seine B
  • Clam Georges Bay North
  • Cockle Ansons Bay
  • Commercial Dive
  • Danish Seine
  • Fish Processing Licence
  • Giant Crab
  • Introduced Marine Plant
  • King Island Kelp
  • Limited Danish Seine
  • Mackerel - Category A
  • Mackerel - Category B
  • Marine Plant
  • Native Oyster Georges Bay
  • Octopus
  • Pacific Oyster
  • Personal
  • Fish Handling
  • Purse Seine Net
  • Rock Lobster
  • Scalefish A
  • Scalefish B
  • Scalefish C
  • Scallop
  • Small Mesh Gillnet
  • Southern Calamari
  • Undaria
  • Venerupus
  • Vessel
  • Wrasse

This initiative will remove a significant cost for individual fishers and small to medium sized, often family-owned, fishery and processing businesses that provide direct and indirect employment for fishers and processors.

Fishing and processing industries require a highly skilled workforce and so, by investing in our workforce at this most challenging time, we are investing in the future resilience of the sector.


Who is eligible?

Commercial fishers and processors who hold the licence types listed above are eligible. The waiver is for 12 months and will take effect for those licence fees listed above that are due for renewal after January 2020 (when the coronavirus first impacted Tasmanian fisheries). Payments already made for those licence fees listed above in the new 2020-21 licence year will be refunded.


When will the initiative be available?

Fee relief will be automatic at the time of the next licence renewal. Note that renewal dates vary by fishery.


When will more information be available?

An update on how these waivers will apply and procedures for the refunding of certain licence fees that have recently been paid will be published on this webpage as soon as available. Fisheries clients can access more information by contacting the Department using the details below.

Licensed fishers and processors covered by these waivers will receive an email outlining the procedures from the Department.


Rural financial counselling

Rural Business Tasmania also runs a Rural Financial Counselling Service that provides free, confidential and independent counsel to farmers and producers suffering financial hardship.

For information about Rural Financial Counselling, go to: www.ruralbusinesstasmania.org.au or call 1300 88 FARM (1300 88 3276).


Stay Afloat

The Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council and RAW Tas have commenced a project to address:

  1. dedicated on the ground support for seafood operators, delivered through the RAW Outreach Program; and
  2. relevant educational resources to encourage fishers to look out for other fishers, and mates to look out for their mates and to seek further support if needed.

Further details are available from: www.tsic.org.au/stayafloat.html

Contact

Licensing and Fisheries Monitoring Section
1 Franklin Wharf
GPO Box 44
HOBART TAS 7001
Phone: (03) 6165 3000, 1300 368 550
Email: fisheries.licensing@dpipwe.tas.gov.au

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