About the NT commercial fishing industry

The Northern Territory (NT) commercial fishing industry is relatively small by national and international standards.

The industry has more than 200 commercial fishing licences, 190 registered fishing vessels and harvests on average 5500 tonnes of fish and aquatic life each year.

There is commercial activity in 15 different wild harvest fisheries.

The largest by volume and value are the offshore snapper fisheries which include the demersal fishery and the Timor Reef fishery.

NT Fisheries manages commercial fishing.

It controls when and where you can fish, what you can catch, what gear you can use and permits to fish.

Read about restrictions on fishing in reef fish protection areas.

The number of licences available in most fisheries is restricted. Read more about commercial fishing licences.

Commercial fisheries

In the NT wild harvest fisheries are managed under the Fisheries Act and Fisheries Regulations and management plans.

Read the Fisheries Act 1988 and fisheries regulations 1992.

Most fisheries span the entire coastline, although some are restricted to specific regions.

Fisheries near the coast are referred to as inshore fisheries and those away from the coast are referred to as offshore fisheries


All of the following are inshore fisheries:


All of the following are offshore fisheries:

Last updated: 27 February 2019

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