This proposal directly addresses QFIRAC priority 2.2b. "Development of case studies for co-management options in Queensland fisheries". The pre-proposal was ranked high by QFIRAC and the PI was invited to submit a full proposal to the FRAB. The FRAB reviewed a draft of the full proposal at its October meeting and the proposal was ranked the second highest of all draft full proposals submitted to the FRAB this year.
The need for co-management has also been identified by the Queensland Department of Primary Industries & Fisheries as a key to the future economic prosperity of the Queensland commercial fishing industry. It has the potential to build-on, and progress further, cultural change in industry sectors. It also has the potential to reduce cost of production for industry and administrative costs for Government. It can also lead to real time monitoring and management, allowing for fisheries to respond to natural environmental variability through adaptive management that adds to, rather than compromises economic viability.
The need for greater co-management, particularly for small scale fisheries, was also a central theme of Seafood Directions 2005 recently held in Sydney. In particular, the presentation by Martin Smallridge on the Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery highlighted what could be achieved by a co-management approach. Further, the AFMF have identified co-managament as a medium-high priority.