Monday, 26 October 2020
Statements by Members
Wide Bay Electorate: Commercial Fishing
I am unashamedly pro-commercial fishing. Not only do our small fishing operators provide us with high-quality seafood from our clean oceans instead of low-quality, poor, imported seafood; they do so in a far more sustainable way than other countries. But they do more than look after our domestic needs; they export our fish to a global market and provide many jobs to the local community.
However, commercial fishers in Wide Bay have been left without the ability to export some fish products after the Queensland government failed to meet several conditions of the wildlife trade operations declaration, contravening the law and forcing a revocation of export permits. As a result, an industry that brings millions of dollars into the state has been left in limbo while the Queensland Premier goes on the campaign trail, leaving this important reform abandoned in the caretaker period. Complying with the WTO is critical to the livelihoods of commercial fishers. Without the ability to export their product, their businesses are at risk of collapsing. I urge the Queensland government to do its job and meet the WTO requirements so fishers can continue to operate their small businesses, provide us with seafood and create jobs that are so necessary for our local economy.