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AFTA calls on Australian state to immediately allow fishing

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Bob Baldwin, AFTA Chair, has called on Victoria to follow in the footsteps of other Australian states and allow fishing.

The representative body of the fishing tackle trade in Australia has called on the Victorian Government to immediately allow angling in the state.

Bob Baldwin, the Chair of the Australian Fishing Trade Association (AFTA), said: “Victoria is out of step with the rest of Australia in being the only state to have banned recreational fishing and the impact is being felt across the whole of the recreational fishing sector.

“Whilst the Government has done a commendable job in reducing the spread of COVID-19, now is the time to look at relaxing restrictions on recreational fishing.

“Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia have now announced they are implementing further small changes to relax social gathering as they understand recreational fishing helps deal with personal issues of mental health and lack of exercise resulting from self-isolation,” Baldwin said.

AFTA says there is no logical explanation as to why tennis, kayaking and surf skiing are deemed acceptable exercise and yet recreational fishing is not when all other Australian states provide an exemption for recreational fishing under schedules of ‘obtaining food’ and ‘exercise’.

“Victoria, once held up as the ‘benchmark state’ for recreational fishers, has now lost its mantle,” Baldwin said.

“AFTA calls on the Victorian Government to immediately allow recreational fishing in the region.”

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