In 2015, there were changes to the administration of licensing and the Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) in the Torres Strait Prawn Fishery (TSPF).
AFMA took over responsibility for licensing and VMS functions for the TSPF from Queensland Fisheries during the 2016 fishing season. This change was part of the Protected Zone Joint Authority (PZJA) administrative review and sought to reduce costs and red tape in the management of the TSPF. The change means that all licence holders are now required to report to AFMA regarding any licensing or VMS matters. Requests may include (but are not limited to):
- Licence or unit transfers.
- Reporting a malfunctioning VMS.
- Seeking a VMS exemption for the TSPF
- Completing manual reporting requirements when a VMS unit isn’t working.
- Any questions relating to licensing or VMS.
Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol (QBFP) will continue working closely with AFMA in carrying out compliance functions for the TSPF, including responsibility for contacting licence holders if there is a failure to meet any of the licensing or VMS requirements.
QBFP can be contacted for any compliance related matters on:
QBFP District Manager Far North Cluster
There are no changes to the requirements regarding VMS. These guidelines will be approved and published on the PZJA website in the next few months. Given the importance of reporting to the correct agency in the correct form, we ask that you follow this version (enclosed), rather than the 2009 version.
Your licence conditions (both on your licence as well those recorded in the Torres Strait Prawn Fishery Management Plan 2009),also provide the statutory requirement for a functional VMS system.