An open letter to Australia’s commercial and recreational fishers

Scott Morrison is misleading recreational fishers about Labor's policies.

There is currently a letter doing the rounds from Mr Morrison trying to scare recreational fishers with lies.

Here are the facts.

Labor has a $55.5 million plan to support recreational fishing.

We will invest $45 million upgrading boat ramps, pontoons and jetties. Northern Tasmania will be a priority region for this funding.

We will invest $10 million to increase native fish stocks.

We will invest $400,000 in Tasmania to eliminate carp.

I have also committed to holding an annual Prime Minister’s roundtable with recreational fishing representatives. And if we are elected on 18 May, the first roundtable will be in Northern Tasmania. For the first time, recreational fishers will be able to raise their issues directly with the PM.

Our policy is better than the Liberals’ in every way. And that’s why Scott Morrison has been lying about Labor and recreational fishing.

In truth, there are no impacts on recreational fishing in waters adjacent to the Tasmanian coastline from marine parks under Labor's plan. There is no impact on Tasmania’s coastal waters.

The marine parks off the Tasmanian coastline were all created by Malcolm Turnbull when he was Environment Minister and made law by Josh Frydenberg when he was Environment Minister – they were created by the Liberal Party.

The two marine parks off northwest Tasmania - Franklin and Boags - have no restrictions on recreational fishing. The marine park off the northeast coast - Flinders - allows recreational fishing in coastal waters.

Recreational fishers do not want to see our waters over-fished. And that’s one aim of marine parks – ensuring we have zones far off the Australian coast where fish aren’t over-fished.

Let’s not forget that time and time again, Scott Morrison has failed to act to stop super trawlers. Unlike the Coalition, Labor will ban super trawlers from Tasmanian and Commonwealth waters by legislating a permanent ban in the Small Pelagic Fishery, leaving more fish for recreational fishers.

Yours sincerely

Bill Shorten MP
Leader of the Opposition
Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs and
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders


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Authorised by N Carroll, ALP, Canberra