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Have your say on gillnet-free zones and fishery reforms


Have your say 

On 5 June 2023, the Australian and Queensland Governments announced over $160 million to phase-out gillnet fishing in the Great Barrier Reef and to address other high-risk fishing activities. 

Commitments relating to the Queensland Gulf of Carpentaria inshore fishery included the following: 

  • establish additional gillnet free zones 
  • accelerate implementation of the Queensland Sustainable Fisheries Strategy 2017–2027 
  • introduce legislation to mandate independent onboard monitoring 
  • all hammerhead sharks to be made no-take species. 

The Future Fishing Taskforce (taskforce) was formed to provide expert advice to the Queensland Government on the best approach, design and implementation of a $100 million structural adjustment package and decisions relating to gillnet fishing in the Great Barrier Reef and proposals for the Gulf of Carpentaria; and impact mitigation package for changes to the Great Sandy Marine Park Zoning Plan. Owing to the inter-connected nature of commercial fishing licences and symbols across Queensland, and the cumulative impacts to seafood supply from these decisions, the taskforce considered all these initiatives together. The taskforce deliberations are now complete and the Queensland Government is currently considering their response. No decisions have been made yet. 

The taskforce recommended that additional consultation inform the final locations and design of gillnet-free zones for the Gulf of Carpentaria. The feedback from this consultation paper will be provided to government as part of the decision-making process. 

No decisions have been made at this point time and none will be made until after consultation. Results from this discussion paper will be discussed with the Gulf of Carpentaria Inshore Fishery working group and the Sustainable Fisheries Expert Panel before any decisions are made. Find out more about the: 

> Queensland Sustainable Fisheries Strategy: 2017–2027 

> Gulf of Carpentaria inshore fishery working group 

> Future Fishing Taskforce and UNESCO Reef Monitoring Report. 


Fisheries Queensland is seeking feedback from commercial, recreational and charter fishers, First Nations peoples, environmental groups and other stakeholders on the management reform options presented in this discussion paper. Feedback on this discussion paper will be used to guide the development of new gillnet-free zones, management strategies and fishery reform options, delivering key actions of the Sustainable Fisheries Strategy. 

The reform options in this discussion paper will affect different users of the fishery in different ways. It’s important that we understand how they affect you so we can make a balanced decision on final management arrangements. 

Your feedback will be used to assess the proposed options based on environmental, economic and social impacts. 

The fastest and easiest way to provide your feedback is to complete the online survey at: daf.engagementhub.com.au/gulf-of-carpentaria-fishery. 

The survey questions are also available at the end of this document if you would prefer to print the survey and post your submission to: 

Gulf of Carpentaria inshore fishery discussion paper 

Department of Agriculture and Fisheries 

GPO Box 46 

Brisbane Qld 4001 

PLEASE NOTE: The survey questions are designed to seek your input – they are not a voting tool. Answers to these questions will be used to help inform management action and provide an insight into the preferences of all stakeholders. 

Submissions close 5 pm, Friday 17 November 2023 

For more information, email future.fishing@daf.qld.gov.au or call 13 25 23. 

If you would like to receive updates on the Gulf of Carpentaria inshore fishery consultation, email your details to future.fishing@daf.qld.gov.au.