Minister announces NSW Fishing Day

NSW fisheries minister Katrina Hodgkinson is inviting first time fishers, recreational, commercial and indigenous fishers and anyone who just enjoys casting a line to participate in the first annual NSW Fishing Day.

Ms Hodgkinson says the new initiative recognises the importance of fishing to the NSW community.

“There are currently around one million people that love wetting a line each year and now we want to encourage a million more to participate in the joy of fishing,” said Minister Hodgkinson.

“In order to recognise the importance of fishing in NSW, the Baird Government will dedicate one (weekend) day every year to be recognised as NSW Fishing Day.

“This will be a day to enjoy and promote fishing as a vital part of our Australian lifestyle, to educate our young generation and importantly, promote our local seafood industry.

“The day will include fishing competitions for all ages and workshops for the younger generation, as an extension of the NSW Government’s ‘Get Hooked…it’s fun to fish’ education program.

“NSW Fishing Day will bring all fishers together to highlight not only the economic benefit of the whole fishing sector, but the social advantages as well. It will be a welcome boost to tourism in towns across NSW and highlight the beauty of these regional and coastal communities.”

Recreational fishers contribute over $3.4 billion dollars to the NSW economy and that leads to the employment of over 14,000 full time jobs.

$1.6 billion is spent annually on travel for recreational fishing trips, fishing tackle and boat‐related items and NSW attracts over $186 million from interstate fishers.

“Fishing tourism contributes millions of dollars each year to local communities, with many towns heavily dependent on the economic contribution the fishing sector makes to their community – an annual fishing day could contribute even more,” said Ms Hodgkinson.

“Importantly this will be a good opportunity to promote regional NSW, with events to be based in a different regional location each year.”

The details of the date, location, organisation and implementation of the day will be planned by a working group including the newly created regionally represented Recreational Fishing NSW, the Ministerial Fishing Advisory Council, Aboriginal Fishing Advisory Council and Destination NSW.

“The working group will consult widely with all interested groups including local councils, peak boating groups, local fish co-op’s and producers, in fact everyone who is involved in promoting the fishing industry,” said Ms Hodgkinson.

“It won’t just be about catching fish but about tasting, sampling and trying some of the best and finest seafood produced anywhere, we want everyone to get hooked on fish.

“NSW Fishing Day will be a day for everyone to try their hand at casting a line and to get hooked on fishing and as Slim Dusty once famously sang, “a bad day’s fishing beats a good day working every time.”

The first annual NSW Fishing Day will be held towards the end of 2015.

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