WAFIC in discussion on future of Vessel Monitoring System

Both DPIRD and Parks Australia have separately recently engaged in preliminary discussions with WAFIC regarding future VMS requirements for commercial fishing vessels in WA.

Parks Australia have expressed their desire for a greater VMS take-up by commercial fishers across Australia to assist monitoring activities within Marine Park Zones and will have grant money available for DPIRD to support operators to adopt modern technology.

Separate to this, while no policy decisions have been made by DPIRD – it is clear they recognise the current VMS system in WA is nearing the end of its natural life and thought needs to be given to future arrangements.

As the level of detail and future direction provided to date has been minimal, WAFIC is in the process of seeking further information, particularly in relation to confidentiality and data sharing – if new arrangements were to be ultimately proposed. Once informed, WAFIC will convene a VMS working group with industry to share information, discuss any concerns with potential future requirements and decide upon how to engage with government to ensure the interests of the fishing industry are not compromised.

It’s still early days, but WAFIC is making industry aware of these conversations at the earliest possibility to allow constructive internal discussions to occur in advance. For further information or to provide feedback, please contact Laura in WAFIC’s industry development team