Between August and November this year the Australian fleet returned a 98.95% compliance rate under vessel monitoring systems (VMS), according to the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA).
The entire fleet of Commonwealth fishing vessels is monitored in real time and the last few months have produced figures demonstrating an average of over 98.80% during November, and compliance hit 100% for a couple of days during October this year.
‘VMS is an essential tool AFMA use to sustainably manage fisheries, providing information such as the vessel location, course and speed for the purpose of domestic compliance, fisheries management and research,’ said AFMA General Manager of Operations Peter Venslovas, congratulating the industry for its co-operation and achieving an outstanding result.
‘It also provides fishing operators with automatic alert notifications designed to raise awareness upon entering protected areas such as Commonwealth Marine Reserves. The high compliance rates demonstrate industry support of VMS and industry’s commitment to the sustainability of Commonwealth fisheries for current and future generations.’
All fishing vessels nominated to Commonwealth fishing concessions are required to have an approved VMS unit fitted and always functioning.
AFMA is reminding operators are VMS units are to remain switched on at all times and this includes across the Christmas and New Year period.