The Australian Fisheries Management Authority is the Australian Government agency responsible for the management and sustainable use of fisheries resources including combating illegal fishing activities in the Australian Fishing Zone that covers 8,148,250 square kilometres, the third largest in the world, and in most of Australia's Exclusive Economic Zone, which extends to 200 nautical miles (370 km) from the coastline of Australia and its external territories, except where a maritime delimitation agreement exists with a state. Australian Fisheries Management Authority is an agency of the Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources. The Authority does not have a legal identity separate from the Commonwealth.
The Australian Fisheries Management Authority was established in February 1992 and its operations are governed by the Australian Fisheries Administration Act 1991 and Fisheries Management Act 1991. Australia declared an Exclusive Economic Zone on 1 August 1994, which extends to 200 nautical miles from its coastline. To the 12 nautical miles boundary is Australia’s territorial waters.
The Australian Fisheries Management Authority manages Commonwealth fisheries that are typically within the 200-nautical-mile (370 km) Australian Fishing Zone, on the high seas, and, in some cases, by agreement with other Australian States.
The agency is also responsible for combating illegal fishing in Australia's Exclusive Economic Zone including the waters between Australia and Indonesia and in the Southern Ocean and the Australian territories of Ashmore and Cartier Islands and Heard Island and McDonald Islands. This activity is conducted with the assistance of the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Navy.