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Outlook

AFMA's Corporate Plan 2020-23 was approved by the Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries. Over the next four years AFMA will look to implement fisheries management in pursuit of sustainable and profitable Commonwealth fisheries by:

  • simplifying regulations to reduce operational and cost burdens for industry
  • managing ecological and compliance risks
  • deterring illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing
  • improving engagement with stakeholders in the responsible management of fisheries.

AFMA will continue to review management arrangements through broad consultative processes to take into consideration commercial, recreational and Indigenous fishing interests AFMA is also committed to continued use of co-management approaches with key stakeholders, and will seek to develop an overarching policy framework to guide the circumstances where that approach is appropriate and desirable. We will also review relevant AFMA policies and fishery harvest strategies, with a particular focus on avoiding management that imposes unnecessary regulatory burdens or inefficiencies for the Commonwealth commercial fishing sector.

AFMA will continue to focus on approaches that encourage voluntary[1] compliance by domestic fishers while maintaining an enforcement capability and taking deterrence action against conscious non-compliance. This will involve operating an effective domestic compliance regime using measures that are proportionate to the risks. We will also continue to work with partners in building regional capacity and capabilities to combat foreign IUU fishing within the Australian Fishing Zone (AFZ).

AFMA will pursue initiatives to reduce regulation and administrative burden including exploring opportunities to streamline fisheries assessment and management processes. Incentive mechanisms including greater individual accountability for boat-level performance and using pricing mechanisms to encourage the uptake of electronic reporting and monitoring will enhance effective and accountable management arrangements.

[1] Voluntary compliance is the idea that compliance is achieved as a result of the community (or individuals) choosing to willingly or voluntarily comply with rules, regulations or even general philosophies. Voluntary compliance is not compliance due to an understanding and/or fear of the consequences of not complying; that is deterrence. In essence voluntary compliance is the act of complying regardless of (or without) any possible repercussions.