The Fisheries Branch provides policy advice to the government (including the Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries) on matters regarding commercial, recreational and Indigenous fishing in Australia. The branch has the aim of promoting the development of fisheries in Australia consistent with the principles of ecologically sustainable development for the benefit of the Australian community. This includes the intersection of Australia’s marine security agenda, and Australian fishing interests with domestic and international marine environment obligations and initiatives. The Branch works with state and territory governments and the fishing industry to deliver on fisheries policy and with the Australian Fisheries Management Authority which has the legislative remit to operationalise fisheries policy. The Branch is also engaged in five treaty-level regional fisheries management organisations which manage fisheries, both on the high seas and in Australia’s maritime jurisdiction, as well as illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing issues. The Fisheries Branch focuses on: • delivering Australian Government fishing related election commitments • setting of regulatory policies for fishing in Commonwealth waters, to ensure these fisheries are managed sustainably • providing strategic advice to government on Commonwealth fisheries issues, including recreational fishing, and national aquaculture issues • engaging with marine environment obligations and initiatives and their impact on the fishing industry • governance oversight for AFMA and the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC), and for related levy arrangements • Australia’s whole-of-government policy on regional and international fisheries management organisations and advocating broader interests in other international organisations including the United Nations • contributing fisheries expertise to Australia’s international trade policy and negotiations.

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