Lobster industry a boon to State

Michael PhilippsSouth Western Times

The South West rock lobster industry has contributed more than $2.3 million to the State economy, according to a recent report.

The Economic Contribution of the Western Rock Lobster Industry report is the first ever formal assessment of the economic and social contribution the harvest of 6300 tonnes of western rock lobster makes to WA.

The report revealed the industry contributed $505 million and supported more than 2400 direct and indirect jobs across the State in 2016-17.

The South West region – inclusive of Busselton and Bunbury – contributed more than $2.3 million and supported nine full-time jobs.

Western Rock Lobster Council chief executive officer Matt Taylor said the report findings demonstrated the industry’s significant value to the State.

“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,” he 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.”

Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly said the industry was a valuable WA employer.

“Western Australians can be proud that our Western Rock Lobster Fishery continues to support regional jobs and economies, all while being certified as ecologically sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council,” he said.

“It is great to see our world-class fishery grow from strength to strength and I have no doubt it will continue to do so through its commitment to science, sustainability and quality seafood.”

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