Thursday, 30 March, 2017

A recent report on Victoria’s first ever Barramundi fishery at the Hazelwood pondage has shown the fishery has made a significant economic impact on Latrobe Valley’s economy.

Prepared by  management consulting firm Kinetica, the independent report was based on an email survey sent to more than 3,500 fishers who applied for boat based permits to fish for barramundi at Hazelwood.

The report estimates that visiting recreational fishers spent around $700,000 while visiting the region and when considering the cost of establishing the fishery was $150,000, this has been an economic success story for the Latrobe Valley.

The report shows since the barramundi fishery was opened in early December last year, more than 5,000 recreational fishers went fishing at Hazelwood that would not have otherwise visited the region.

Feedback from the survey showed 77 per cent of people who fished at Hazelwood highly valued the unique opportunity to fish for Barramundi and apart from a few switched on local fishers catching more than fifty barramundi each since it opened, overall around 1 in every 4 of fishers managed to land one.

The Andrews Labor Government is working hard with the local community to ensure there is great opportunities for recreational fishing at Hazelwood.

Fisheries Victoria will continue to closely monitor the condition and health of the fish in the pondage over the days and weeks after the power plant closes.

The development of the barramundi fishery at Hazelwood is a key part of the Labor Government’s Target One Million initiative,  aiming to get more people fishing, more often.

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

“Victoria’s first barramundi release in the Pondage drove hundreds of thousands of dollars into the local economy as anglers descended from all over Victoria and interstate to try their hand at this world-class fishing opportunity.”

“Barramundi are a wily fish, and thousands of anglers have experienced the thrill of a barra on their line since October, with anglers bagging fish up to 87cm in length.”

“Establishing the Pondage as a unique fishing destination brought huge numbers of new visitors to the region and this economic survey confirms that local hospitality, accommodation and retail business have benefitted.”
“Recreational fishing is a great activity that the whole family can enjoy and I’m determined to explore every available option to support the Pondage to remain a popular fishing and visitor destination into the future.”