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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries
Thursday 19 August 2021

Sustainability and secure access to guide WA's aquatic resources

    • ​The Aquatic Resources Management Act (ARMA) takes a big step toward implementation
    • The ARMA is supported by the commercial, recreational and aquaculture sectors
    • Driven by sustainability, the ARMA will provide more secure fishing rights  

Western Australia's Parliament has passed the final amendments that open the pathway to implementation of the Aquatic Resources Management Act 2016.

When the ARMA comes into operation, it will replace the Fish Resources Management Act 1994 and the Pearling Act 1990 as the State's primary fisheries legislation.

Western Australia is a world leader in fisheries management and sustainability, and the new Act provides a legislative framework for this to continue, formally recognising the stewardship role that our commercial, recreational and aquaculture sectors have in the management of our aquatic resources.

The new Act has ongoing aquatic resource sustainability at its core but also still recognises customary fishers, those engaged in activities for public benefit purposes such as research, as well as commercial fishing, recreational fishing and collection of broodstock for aquaculture purposes.

A key feature of the legislation is setting its foundation on the aquatic resource rather than the traditional approach based on a fishery or sector-based fishing activity. It will enable a structured approach to more secure fishing rights for all sectors, underpinned by resource sustainability.

Existing management and access arrangements will remain in place for our State's commercial fishing and pearling industries, and will be migrated over time into the new framework.

Comments attributed to Fisheries Minister Don Punch:

"The McGowan Government has been committed to delivering the Aquatic Resources Management Act and now we can begin the steps towards implementation.

"WA is already recognised by the Australian Institute of Marine Science Index of Marine Industry as the foremost fishing State in Australia and our future is bright.

"Our sustainability credentials are well recognised including by the world-leading Marine Stewardship Council, and this new legislation will provide a secure framework for sustainability for the future.

"ARMA provides more certainty to all fishing sectors while placing sustainability at the heart of decision making."

Minister's office - 6552 6900

Last modified: 19/08/2021 12:53 PM

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