26 October 2020

The Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) has amended the list of approved Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) unit types for use on Commonwealth nominated fishing vessels.

Changes have been made to the approved list of VMS units to ensure they remain current and in line with the technology available in the market.

These changes take effect 1 December 2020 and include the “grandfathering” of all Inmarsat C based VMS units.

Why is AFMA grandfathering Inmarsat C Devices?

Inmarsat C devices are coming to their end of life, with limited new devices being introduced into the market. Taking this into consideration along with their purchase costs and the recent introduction of the Inmarsat C Network Access Fee, AFMA has made the decision to remove them from the list of approved units.

“Grandfathered” units

VMS units no longer on the AFMA approved list that are now subject to ‘grandfathering’:

  • Thrane & Thrane -   TT6140 and TT6150
  • Japan Radio Company (JRC) -  JUE 95VM
  • Furuno – Felcom 16 and Felcom 19

If you currently have a ‘grandfathered’ Inmarsat C VMS unit installed and operating on a Commonwealth nominated vessel, you may continue to use them in accordance with AFMA’s VMS requirements.

When the VMS unit requires replacing, or should you wish to nominate a new boat to a Commonwealth concession, you will not be able to use or fit these units (including transferring second hand units between boats) and will need to purchase/fit one of the AFMA approved units.

Approved Units

The units currently available for use on Commonwealth nominated vessels;

Skywave IDP IDP 690
Skywave IDP ST6100
CLS Triton Advanced Triton Adv

Contact your supplier

Operators looking to purchase new, or needing replacement, units should speak with their preferred supplier. Operators fishing in State/Territory Jurisdictions should also confirm with the respective fishing authority about their VMS requirements.