Global leaders in innovative, sustainable lobster management

Western Rock Lobster Industry worth half a billion dollars to WA economy

The Western Rock Lobster industry is a major contributor to economic growth and job creation in Western Australia, according to comprehensive economic analysis that quantifies the fishery’s contribution to the State for the first time.

Launched today by Fisheries Minister, the Hon Dave Kelly MLA, the report reveals the industry contributed $505 million and supported more than 2,400 direct and indirect jobs across the State in 2016-17.

Of this, the Perth metropolitan region – spanning from Two Rocks to Mandurah – contributed more than $300 million, supported 1,260 jobs and generated approximately 34 per cent of the total annual catch of Western Rock Lobsters.

Western Rock Lobster Council CEO Matt Taylor said the report findings demonstrate the industry’s significant value to the State.

“After more than half a century of growth for this industry, we are finally able to quantify the true value of our iconic fishery for the very first time,” Mr Taylor said.

“The industry was started by passionate fishers and their families in the early 1950s. Today it is an important, sophisticated and sustainable industry that continues to contribute significant value for WA.

“In particular, the industry continues to underpin economic prosperity and social development within our regional towns and coastal communities.”

The fishery, which is managed by the Western Rock Lobster Council, creates major local employment opportunities across the broader supply chain including the managed fishery, processed seafood manufacturing, boat building and tourism.

There are a total of 226 boats in the fishery with 75 boats operating within the Perth metropolitan area, where the fishery and processed seafood manufacturing sectors are the key economic drivers.

“We are pleased the findings confirm the Western Rock Lobster fishery is the most valuable fishery in Australia, and we can now promote its positive and tangible impact on our State,” Mr Taylor said.

“Its economic contribution is comparable to other primary industries in Western Australia including sheep meat and wool and we are a market leader contributing almost 60 per cent of Australia’s lobster exports.

“Our industry has been a constant generator of stability, job creation, and economic output for many years and we believe it has the capacity to become a $1 billion industry within the next decade.”

The fishery is already recognised as a global leader in sustainable fisheries management and in 2000, it was the first fishery in the world to be certified as ecologically sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council, recognising the high environmental values and sustainable practices of industry members.

“We proactively manage our fishery using evidence-based, scientific research and modern technology and we’re proud of our role in maintaining its health and productivity to ensure it remains valuable and sustainable for generations to come,” Mr Taylor said.

Western Rock Lobster Council Chairman Kim Colero said the industry is looking to the future.

“Today marks the beginning of a new and exciting chapter in our history and confirms the status of the Western Rock Lobster industry as a vital contributor to the Western Australian economy.

“Importantly, as an industry we are always looking to the future. This report signals our intent to continue to build our industry and it is our hope that within a decade we will be inviting the Minister back to help us celebrate a $1billion industry,” Mr Colero said.

Read the summary report here 

Read the full report here

Read the Ministers media statement here 

2017-084 WRL IPA: economic contribution of the Western Rock Lobster industry to Western Australia and Australia is supported by funding from the Fisheries Research Development Commission (FRDC) on behalf of the Australian Government.

Posted in General

Latest news

WRL request independent peer review of Western Rock Lobster science and modelling

WRL take steps towards working collaboratively with the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) to undertake an independent peer review of the Western Rock Lobster model and science. …

Expression of Interest (EoI) – Fishing Operations Sub-committee

Western Rock Lobster are seeking 5 young active skippers to become members of a committee that will assess then recommend any industry rules and regulations that should be relaxed, removed …

The Potential for a New Statutory Management Authority

ACIL Allen Consulting has been commissioned by the Western Rock Lobster Council and the Western Australian Fishing Industry Council to conduct a scoping study on the advantages and disadvantages of …

Prayers for a safe, prosperous 2018 at traditional fleet blessing in Dongara

Dongara fishermen were joined by their families, friends and community members today to celebrate the start of a new fishing season with the traditional Blessing of the Fleet ceremony. Local …

Season’s Greetings from WRL: Message from the Chair

I would like to extend my personal thanks to our many members, stakeholders, PFAs and WRLC Directors who have contributed to the extensive range of activities and achievements by the …

Western Rock Lobster Industry worth half a billion dollars to WA economy

The Western Rock Lobster industry is a major contributor to economic growth and job creation in Western Australia, according to comprehensive economic analysis that quantifies the fishery’s contribution to the …

Launch of the Local Lobster Program!

Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly announced today the launch of the Local Lobster Program! Click here to read the Ministerial Statement. The Local Lobster Program, formerly known as the Local Access …

New AMSA Vessel Stability Guide

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has developed a new guide for all fishing vessel owners, operators and crew to help better understand the key elements and the hazards that …

Rockingham: two men fined more than $25,000 for taking lobsters

Two men have been fined more than $25,000 between them after causing a big loss to a second generation commercial rock lobster fisher’s livelihood. Click here to read the full …

Western Rock Lobster are proud sponsors of “In Search of Fish and Fortune”. Grab your copy today!

Western Rock Lobster are proud sponsors of the book “In Search of Fish and Fortune” written by author and master shipwright Bill Leonard. In Search of Fish and Fortune celebrates …

Industry Support Needed For The Meshed Pot Program

The mesh pot program provides critical data for modelling and managing your western rock lobster industry and setting the TACC. Unfortunately, participation in the program by fishers has dropped significantly …

Receive latest news & updates straight to your inbox