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Government of Western Australia - Department of Fisheries
Thursday 15 June 2023

New schemes open to support West Coast demersal scalefish recovery

Commercial and charter operators are now able to access support schemes to assist them to adjust to the new management changes needed for the recovery of demersal scalefish stocks from Kalbarri to Augusta.

The Voluntary Fisheries Adjustment Scheme (VFAS) is now open to all current commercial permit holders in the West Coast Demersal Scalefish Interim Managed Fishery, to support the sector manage the reduction in their allowable catch level.

Under the scheme, commercial fishers can voluntarily surrender units of entitlements and their associated Fishing Boat Licence in return for agreed compensation. Commercial fishers have until 30 September 2023 to submit an offer.

From 1 July, a new quota tag allocation system is being introduced for charter operators who hold a Fishing Tour Operator Licence in the West Coast region. Under the quota system, 6,000 tags (applies to the top 4 species) have been allocated between 21 charter operators in the region, based on their catch history over the past five years. 

To help transition to the new quota tag system, the Charter Diversification Scheme will allow eligible charter operators to apply for grants of up to $20,000 to diversify their business into other tourism experiences. Grants of up to $5000 are also available to eligible operators with some reliance on catching demersal scalefish who did not receive tags.

Remember you can switch your fishing activities to non-demersal species such as mahi mahi, tuna and whiting in the West Coast region all year around.

For more information visit​.

Last modified: 15/06/2023 10:30 AM

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