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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 43 asked in the Legislative Council on 14 February 2019 by Hon Peter Collier

Minister responding: Hon D.J. Kelly
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on 14 February 2019

WESTERN ROCK LOBSTER FISHERY

43. Hon PETER COLLIER to the minister representing the Minister for Fisheries:

I refer to the McGowan Labor government's original decision in relation to the western rock lobster fishery package.

(1) Did the minister take the package to cabinet; and, if yes, on what date; and, if not, why not?

(2) Will the minister confirm that he will not seek to nationalise any part of the western rock lobster fishery or any other fishery into the future?

(3) In the meeting with the Premier and the western rock lobster industry, did the government commit to providing rock lobster fishers with property rights?

(4) If yes to (3), was this a commitment in writing?

(5) If yes to (4), will he table that correspondence; and, if not, why not?

Hon ALANNAH MacTIERNAN replied:

I thank the member for the question. The following information has been provided to me by the Minister for Fisheries.

(1) Cabinet discussions are confidential.

(2) The agreement reached with the Western Rock Lobster Council in December 2018 did not constitute nationalisation of the western rock lobster industry. Fish stocks have always been and will always remain the property of the community. I have confirmed to the Western Australian Fishing Industry Council that the proposed changes to the western rock lobster industry were specific to that fishery and set no precedent for any other fishery in the state.

(3)–(5) It was agreed that an independently chaired working group of industry and government representatives will be convened to examine further opportunities to grow the industry. This includes Indigenous participation, growing the industry, providing a better economic return to the state, improving security of access rights and increasing community donations.