Aquaculture Lease - New South Wales

Service summary

You will require an aquaculture lease if you intend to carry out operations such as cultivation of fish or marine life, dredging of oysters or other commercial productions or operations within public water lands in New South Wales.

There are two ways that a lease can be obtained; either a current lessee transfers the lease to another party or applying for a lease to develop an area that has not been previously cultivated.

Four classes of lease are available:

  • Class 1 lease: required to cultivate fish or conduct other similar operations in water 6 meters deep;
  • Class 2 lease: required to conduct these activities in water deeper than 6 metres;
  • Class 3 lease: required to conduct intensive fish or marine vegetation cultivation; and
  • Class 4 lease: required to conduct fish ranching.

Please consult the Contact Officer for more information.

Service type


A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for an aquaculture lease, you must:

  • Be 18 years of age or over;
  • Complete and submit your application within 90 days of it being advertised;
  • Sign the draft lease document;
  • Specify the species of fish or marine vegetation to be cultivated;
  • Comply with any conditions relevant to the individual lease; and
  • Pay the required fees.

Please contact the Contact Officer for more information regarding eligibility requirements.



Up to 15 years.


Annual rent must be paid before 31 July each year.



Class 1, 2 or 3 lease.


Class 4 lease.


Any further applications for consent to transfer lodged on the same day: $77.


Class 1.


Class 2 or 4.


Class 3.


Further fees may apply. Please consult the Contact Officer for more information.

Other resources

Comply Schedule of Aquaculture Fees Opens in a new browser window



An application for a lease must be made in a form approved by the Director and accompanied by the processing application fee.


Where leases are advertised by the Department through auction, public tender or ballot, the application process varies. You must follow the relevant instructions as printed in the Government Gazette.

Administering agency

Department of Industry
NSW Department of Primary Industries
Fisheries NSW

Act(s) name

Fisheries Management Act 1994 (New South Wales)

Regulation(s) name

Fisheries Management (Aquaculture) Regulation 2012 (New South Wales)

Contact details

Enquiries, Head Office
Department of Industry
NSW Department of Primary Industries
Fisheries NSW

Operating address:
Port Stephens Fisheries Centre
Taylors Beach Road
Taylors Beach
New South Wales 2316
Mailing address:
Locked Bag 1
Nelson Bay
New South Wales 2315


02 4982 1232


1300 550 474


02 4982 1107

Supporting information


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