WAFIC welcomes lobster proposal climbdown

WAFIC has welcomed news that the government has revised a lobster reform proposal Photo: WAFIC WAFIC has welcomed news that the government has revised a lobster reform proposal Photo: WAFIC

The chief executive of the Western Australian Fishing Industry Council (WAFIC) has welcomed the Australian government's decision to revise a proposed lobster reform.

Under the initial proposal the annual catch was to be increased to 1,385 tonnes but The Hon. Dave Kelly Minister for Fisheries has advised in a press release that this figure will be reduced to 315 tonnes.

John Harrison said: "The original proposed unilateral decision shocked our fishers and sent a tremor through not just our industry, but primary industries across the world.

"We are pleased that the government has unveiled plans that will now create both positive outcomes for this great fishery and the Western Australian community."

Mr Harrison said that the decision was the result of negotiations between the government, the Western Rock Lobster Council (WRLC), Fishing Families WA, WAFIC and industry stakeholders.

“It’s a good outcome for the long-term approach to provide greater security for our industry’s fishing rights. Securing access rights to commercially fish is not only vital to our industry, but the environment and the local Western Australian community that rely upon our seafood industry,” he said.

Mr Harrison said key components, also addressed in the announcement, were the ongoing vision for a lobster festival and the need for a multi-disciplined working group.

“The proposal, with final details to be released in March, will allow for the local community to be able to effortlessly access some of the best, most sustainable seafood in the world,” he concluded.

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