Industry welcomes joint reef stategy

It is with relief that we acknowledge the announcement of a federal and state government consensus strategy to address concerns over shark control and visitor safety in the Great Barrier Reef area.

“The announcements yesterday by the Federal Environment Minister, Hon Sussan Ley, and Queensland Minister for Agricultural Development and Fisheries, Hon Mark Furner, demonstrates that a collaborative approach between different levels of government and industry can work”, QTIC Chief Executive, Daniel Gschwind said.

Confusion and uncertainty arose last year following a number of shark incidents and a court ruling over the legality of certain shark control measures in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.  The situation contributed to negative media coverage and wide-spread visitor concerns, adversely affecting key Queensland destinations.

Mr Gschwind continued, “It was critical that industry spoke up strongly and with a united voice when governments appeared to have reached a very unhelpful impasse”.

Tourism Tropical North Queensland, Whitsunday Tourism and the Queensland Tourism Industry Council made strong, joint representations to state and federal governments in November, urging a commonsense and science-based response to the challenges.

“We now have a strategic way forward that will see the implementation of measures that can restore visitor confidence in a way that is consistent with scientific evidence and with our environmental responsibilities.

“We congratulate both governments for responding in a constructive manner and work with the industry to restore confidence in our capacity to address challenges,” said Mr Gschwind.

A transition to SMART drumlines, support for safety netting, drone surveillance and further research will form a Commonwealth Government investment of $5 million dollars.  Out of this $1 million will be allocated specifically to support the Whitsundays for education, signage and further research.

Ministers statement below.

Below is the statement from November:

Image from Tourism and Events Queensland