Fresh fish from Maningrida arrives at Darwin Fish Market

The first shipment of locally-caught fish from the Aboriginal Coastal Licence program arrived at Darwin Fish Market from Maningrida last week.

Aboriginal Coastal Licences allow Aboriginal people living in remote communities to start up their own small-scale fishing businesses and enjoy the economic and lifestyle benefits of community fishing enterprises.

They can catch a variety of fish and sell them to the local community, shops, visitors, and into Darwin and regional areas.

This brings huge benefits to coastal communities by allowing them to develop small-scale fishing businesses and increase the supply of local, fresh, affordable seafood.

The Northern Territory Government supports Aboriginal Coastal Licence holders through Indigenous Fishing Mentors, who regularly visit remote communities to provide instruction on fishing and seafood handling techniques, and the Indigenous Marine Training program, which is designed to teach skills in catching fish and delivering them safely to market.

A two-week Certificate II in Fishing Operations training course was delivered in Maningrida in May by the Department of Primary Industry and Resources’ Indigenous Development Unit and the Australian Maritime and Fisheries Academy.

The course was run at the request of Aboriginal Coastal Licence holders and Aboriginal community residents of Maningrida.

The training was funded by the Northern Territory Government’s Indigenous Responsive Program, which provides funding for regional and remote communities to train workers for projects in the community, and supported by Bawinanga Aboriginal Corporation.

Bawinanga Aboriginal Corporation is supporting Aboriginal Coastal Licence holders with equipment, business administration services and preparing grant applications for key enabling infrastructure.

The Certificate II Fishing Operations course has also previously been run in Nhulunbuy and Wadeye. Information about commercial fishing, including Aboriginal Coastal Licences, is available on the website.

A tray of the Bluetail Mullet shipped to Darwin
A tray of the Bluetail Mullet shipped to Darwin