THE Department of Infrastructure has announced the release of a discussion paper into coastal trading reform for cargo vessels.

The document addresses many key points, including general and temporary licences, removal of the five-voyage minimum and proposed timeframes.

“Following consultation late last year, this policy paper proposes changes to the way that cargo vessels are regulated under the Coastal Trading (Revitalising Australian Shipping) Act 2012 (Coastal Trading Act),” the document states.

“We are now seeking further feedback on these proposals.”

Passenger vessel proposals are to be addressed in a separate paper.

The document suggests eight key changes including separation of licensing for cargo and passenger ships, automatic approvals of temporary licence applications and voyage notification requirements.

Feedback can be submitted via email to by close of business Friday 9 October 2020.