Trawl catch. (Photo Credit: Australian Fisheries Management Authority)
New fisheries could mean more investment opportunities
Wednesday, December 11, 2013, 23:20 (GMT + 9)
Fish species not currently commercially fished in South Australian waters could soon end up on menus around the world thanks to new State Government fishing regulations.
From 1 December, amendments to fisheries regulations will enable permits for exploratory and developmental fishing activities to be issued for the first time, opening the door to the development of new fisheries based on untapped species and new markets.
Fisheries Minister Gail Gago said the arrangements would allow greater flexibility to support new fishing ventures.
"South Australia's clean marine waters are home to highly sought-after seafood, and our fisheries are renowned as some of the best-managed in the world," she said.
"Under the current regulations there is limited opportunity to authorise fishing activities that are not part of an existing fishery - these new permits will change that.
"They will allow new fishing activities to be explored in a sustainable way, so we can develop new, innovative fishing sectors and market opportunities for the South Australian seafood industry.
“Should these new fishing sectors come to fruition it will also further economic and job opportunities for regional areas.”
Initially, an exploratory fishery permit would be provided to allow the gathering of preliminary information to determine the feasibility of commercially harvesting the aquatic resource.
If deemed feasible, a developmental fishery permit would then be provided to enable a more rigorous assessment of the commercial potential of a species in order to demonstrate that it is ecologically sustainable, economically viable and socially acceptable.
Minister Gago said the new regulations also support the government's Premium Food and Wine from our Clean Environment Strategic Priority.
"Proposals will undergo thorough assessment, and strict conditions will be set on activities, including reporting and monitoring requirements to ensure our aquatic resources are protected.
"Ultimately, this could see the emergence of new species for harvesting, the possibility of new fisheries and job opportunities and the growth of our commercial fishing industry."