The Andrews Labor Government is delivering its election commitment to remove commercial fishing nets from Port Phillip Bay by 1 April 2022, with eight snapper longline fishery licences remaining.

This sustainable fishery will complement the Corner Inlet fishery in continuing to provide high value, premium seafood to Victoria’s restaurants and cafes. 

The Labor Government has invested $27 million to transition the bay from commercial netting into a recreational fishing haven, with over 600 tonnes of additional fish soon to be available for Victorians to reel in. 

Over the coming days’ consultation by the Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA) will commence regarding the number of other species that can be caught alongside the long line snapper.

The VFA Notice proposes no more than one tonne of flathead, one tonne of shark and two tonnes of other species (excluding King George Whiting and calamari). 

The Labor Government is focused on getting more Victorians fishing more often. Since 2014, over $71 million has been invested in removing nets from the Gippsland Lakes and Port Phillip Bay, delivering record fish stocking across Victoria, building a new fish hatchery at Arcadia, making all boat ramps free and commencing Victoria’s largest ever boat ramp revitalisation program in the state’s history. 

Recreational fishing is worth over $3.9 billion to the Victorian economy, supporting 33,000 jobs, with in excess of 840,000 Victorians on the water each year.

“We are working hard to deliver our election commitment, whilst also supporting existing licence holders and maintaining the health of Victoria’s much-loved Port Phillip Bay.”

“Fishing in Victoria contributes billions of dollars to the local economy, whether it’s building better boat ramps, building a new fish hatchery or investing in the Golden Tag competition to get people out to our regions, we are delivering better fishing experiences for all Victorians .”

The Hon Melissa Horne

Minister for Fishing and Boating