NT supports QLD fishos in push for net-free areas

IN a letter addressed to Queensland Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, the Hon. William (Bill) Byrne MLA, the Amateur Fishermen Association of the NT (AFANT) has thrown its weight behind the Queensland campaign for net free areas.

AFANT executive officer Tristan Sloan said due to closures and proactive measures taken by successive Northern Territory governments, the Top End possess “arguably the best recreational fishing in Australia”.

“These areas closed to commercial fishing provide significant economic, cultural and social benefits to residents of the Northern Territory and help support the $100 million industry built expressly around recreational fishing tourism,” said Sloan.

“The economic benefit of these areas through the tourism fishing industry far outweighs what was provided previously by the commercial fishing industry through the sale of seafood,” he said.  

“AFANT strongly urges the government of QLD to abide by the commitment that they made to the recreational fishermen of QLD prior to the last election and commit to removing all commercial fishing effort in the areas of: St Helens Beach to Cape Hillsborough; Keppel Bay to Fitzroy River; and Trinity Bay.

It is our belief that the people of QLD stand to benefit enormously from the implementation of theses net free areas through your government. These areas will see an increased participation of residents and tourists in recreational fishing leading to considerable financial flow on to local economies as well as the social and cultural benefits of participating in one of Australia’s greatest recreational activities and eating fresh line-caught seafood,” said Sloan.

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