Fisheries Protection Ordinance


Published: 2012-08-02

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Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 1

Chapter: 171 Fisheries Protection Ordinance Gazette Number Version Date

Long title E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


To promote the conservation of fish and other forms of aquatic life within the waters of Hong Kong and to regulate
fishing practices and to prevent activities detrimental to the fishing industry.

(Amended 68 of 1987 s. 2)


[12 October 1962]

(Originally 39 of 1962)

(*Format changes—E.R. 2 of 2012)
______________________________________________________________________
Note:
* The format of the Ordinance has been updated to the current legislative styles.

Part: 1 Preliminary* 13 of 2012 15/06/2012

______________________________________________________________________
Note:
* (Added 13 of 2012 s. 3)

Section: 1 Short title E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


This Ordinance may be cited as the Fisheries Protection Ordinance.

Section: 2 Interpretation E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


In this Ordinance, unless the context otherwise requires-
ancillary vessel (附屬船隻), in relation to a vessel registered under section 14, means a vessel that falls within the

description of an ancillary vessel endorsed on the certificate of ownership of the vessel; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
Authority (總監) means the person appointed by an order made under section 4A; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
authorized officer (獲授權人員) means any officer appointed under section 3A; (Added 68 of 1987 s. 3)
certificate holder (證明書持有人) means a person to whom a certificate of registration is issued under section 14;

(Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
certificate of ownership (擁有權證明書) has the meaning given by section 2 of the Merchant Shipping (Local

Vessels) Ordinance (Cap 548); (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
certificate of registration (登記證明書) means a certificate issued under section 14; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
*commencement date (生效日期) means the date on which the Fisheries Protection (Amendment) Ordinance 2012

(13 of 2012) comes into operation; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
Director (署長) means the Director of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation; (Amended L.N. 331 of 1999)
fish (魚類) includes all forms of aquatic life and turtles;
fisheries inspector (漁業督察) means an officer appointed under section 3;
fisheries protection area (漁業保護區) means an area of the waters of Hong Kong designated as a fisheries

protection area by an order made under section 4A; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
fishing (捕魚) includes the capture or taking of fish, and any attempt to do so; (Amended 13 of 2012 s. 4)
fishing gear (捕魚用具) means any equipment, apparatus, tool, instrument or device and its accessories utilized in

fishing; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
impoundment (圍塘) means an enclosure of an area of the waters of Hong Kong, by means of a net or other

removable and permeable structure, that is used or designed for the purpose of fish culture; (Added 13 of 2012
s. 4)



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 2

local fishing vessel (本地漁船) means any fishing vessel in respect of which an operating licence has been issued;
(Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)

operating licence (運作牌照) has the meaning given by section 2 of the Merchant Shipping (Local Vessels)
Ordinance (Cap 548); (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)

owner (船東) has the meaning given by section 2 of the Merchant Shipping (Local Vessels) Ordinance (Cap 548);
(Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)

permit holder (許可證持有人) means a person to whom a research fishing permit has been issued or whose permit
has been renewed; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)

register (登記冊) means the register kept under section 13; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
registered vessel (已登記船隻) means a local fishing vessel registered under section 14; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
research fishing permit (研究捕魚許可證) means a permit issued or renewed under section 25; (Added 13 of 2012

s. 4)
Secretary (局長) means the Secretary for Food and Health; (Added 13 of 2012 s. 4)
toxic substance (有毒物質) means a substance specified in Schedule 1; (Amended 13 of 2012 s. 4)
vessel (船隻) means any ship, junk, boat, dynamically supported craft, or any other description of vessel used in

navigation. (Replaced 13 of 2012 s. 4)
______________________________________________________________________
Note:
* Commencement date: 15 June 2012.

Part: 2 Appointment and Powers of Officers and Making of

Subsidiary Legislation*
13 of 2012 15/06/2012


______________________________________________________________________
Note:
* (Added 13 of 2012 s. 5)

Section: 3 Appointment of officers E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


(1) The Chief Executive may appoint in writing by name or office any public officer to be a fisheries inspector.
(Amended 65 of 1999 s. 3)

(2) An appointment made under this section may be made to give effect to the purposes of this Ordinance generally
or may be limited to such purposes as may be specified in the appointment.


Section: 3A Authorized officers E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


(1) The Director may appoint in writing any officer of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department to be
an authorized officer for the purposes of such provision of this Ordinance as the Director specifies. (Amended
L.N. 331 of 1999)

(2) An authorized officer when exercising a power under this Ordinance shall produce his written appointment
under subsection (1) for inspection by any person who reasonably requires to see it.

(Added 68 of 1987 s. 4)

Section: 4 Regulations E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


(1) The Chief Executive in Council may by regulation provide for- (Amended 65 of 1999 s. 3)
(a) the prohibition or restriction of the use of explosives for the purpose of fishing;
(b) the prohibition or restriction of the use of toxic substances for the purpose of fishing;
(c) the prohibition or restriction of the taking of any variety of fish, or fish of any size, from the waters of Hong

Kong; (Amended 68 of 1987 s. 5)
(d) the prohibition or restriction of the use of any specified kinds of net or of nets having a mesh of any

specified size for the purpose of fishing;
(e) the conservation of oysters and oyster beds;



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 3

(f) the prohibition or restriction of the collection, removal or destruction of any variety of fish spawn or turtle
eggs;

(g) the protection of spawning areas;
(ga) the prohibition or restriction of the use of any apparatus of a class or description specified under paragraph

(gb), for the purpose of fishing; (Added 36 of 1998 s. 2)
(gb) the specification by the Director, by notice published in the Gazette, of the class or description of apparatus

for the purposes of paragraph (ga); (Added 36 of 1998 s. 2)
(h) generally, the protection or regulation of fishing.

(2) Regulations made under this Ordinance may provide that contravention of any provision of the regulations
constitutes an offence and may prescribe penalties therefor not exceeding $200000 and imprisonment for 6
months. (Amended 68 of 1987 s. 5; 36 of 1998 s. 2; 13 of 2012 s. 6)


Section: 4A Orders 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


The Secretary may, by order published in the Gazette—
(a) designate any area of the waters of Hong Kong to be a fisheries protection area to promote the conservation

and management of marine and fisheries resources; and
(b) appoint a person to be the Authority for the purposes of this Ordinance.

(Added 13 of 2012 s. 7)

Section: 4B Management and control of fishing in fisheries protection

areas
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



(1) The Authority may make rules for the management and control of fishing in any fisheries protection area,
including but not limited to the specification of any zone within any fisheries protection area and the prohibition
of any fishing in the specified zone.

(2) Any rules made under this section may provide that any contravention of any provision of the rules constitutes
an offence and may prescribe penalties for the contravention not exceeding a fine of $200000 and imprisonment
for 6 months.

(3) A provision of a regulation made under section 4 is to prevail over any inconsistent provision of a rule made
under this section.

(Added 13 of 2012 s. 7)

Part: 3 Search, Seizure, Arrest and Evidence* 13 of 2012 15/06/2012

______________________________________________________________________
Note:
* (Added 13 of 2012 s. 8)

Section: 5 Power of search and seizure 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If a magistrate is satisfied by information on oath that there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that—
(a) any vessel, raft or impoundment within the waters of Hong Kong; or
(b) any premises or place,

is being or has been used in connection with any offence under this Ordinance, the magistrate may issue a search
warrant.

(2) A search warrant issued under subsection (1) may authorize the Director or any fisheries inspector or authorized
officer to—
(a) board and search the vessel or raft, or enter and search the impoundment, premises or place; and
(b) seize, remove and detain the raft or any thing which the Director, fisheries inspector or authorized officer

reasonably suspects to be, or to contain, evidence of the commission of such an offence.
(3) The Director or a fisheries inspector or authorized officer may exercise any of the powers referred to in

subsection (2) without a search warrant issued under this section if—
(a) there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that any vessel, raft, impoundment, premises or place is being



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 4

or has been used in connection with any offence under this Ordinance; and
(b) it would not be reasonably practicable to obtain the search warrant in respect of the vessel, raft,

impoundment, premises or place before exercising those powers.
(Replaced 13 of 2012 s. 9)


Section: 6 Forfeiture of things in respect of which offences are

committed
E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012



(1) Where a magistrate is satisfied that an offence against this Ordinance has been committed in respect of any fish
or any other article or thing seized under the provisions of section 5, whether or not any person has been
convicted in respect of such offence, the magistrate shall order such fish or other article or thing to be forfeited
to the Government. (Amended 65 of 1999 s. 3)

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in subsection (1), where any fish or perishable thing is seized under section
5, the Director or any authorized officer may cause the fish or thing to be sold or otherwise disposed of prior to
application being made for the forfeiture thereof, and the proceeds thereof retained in lieu, and if in any such
case the magistrate, upon such application for forfeiture being made, is not satisfied that an offence against this
Ordinance has been committed in respect thereof, upon application made by any person claiming to be the owner
of the fish or thing he shall, if he is satisfied as to the validity of the claim, order such proceeds to be paid to the
claimant, but where no claim is made or the magistrate is not satisfied as to the validity of any claim, the
proceeds shall be paid into the general revenue. (Amended 68 of 1987 s. 7; 13 of 2012 s. 10)

(3) For the purposes of this section-
proceeds (售賣得益) means sale price less any commission or fee payable in respect of such sale.

Section: 7 Seizure and forfeiture of things used for the commission of

offences
E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012



Whenever it is lawful under this Ordinance for the Director or any fisheries inspector or authorized officer to seize and
retain any fish or other article or thing, it shall be lawful- (Amended 68 of 1987 s. 8; 13 of 2012 s. 11)

(a) to seize and retain-
(i) any receptacle other than a vessel or vehicle in which such fish or other article or thing is contained;
(ii) any machinery other than the propellant machinery of a vessel or vehicle, implement, utensil, material

or substance used for the commission of any offence against this Ordinance; and
(iii) any books or documents which appear to him to contain evidence that an offence has been or is about

to be committed against this Ordinance; and
(b) to direct any vessel or vehicle in which any thing referred to in paragraph (a) is seized to proceed to such

port or place as may be convenient for unloading from the vessel or vehicle anything seized thereon and
may then detain the vessel or vehicle for such time as may reasonably be required to effect the unloading.


Section: 7A Stop and search without warrant 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If the Director or a fisheries inspector or authorized officer has reasonable grounds for suspecting that a person
has committed or is about to commit an offence under this Ordinance, the Director, fisheries inspector or
authorized officer may, without a warrant and on production of proof of identity—
(a) stop the person or, if the person is on board a vessel or raft, stop and board the vessel or raft, for the

purposes of requiring that person to produce for inspection—
(i) proof of his or her identity;
(ii) any certificate of registration issued in respect of the vessel (if the person is on board a vessel);
(iii) any research fishing permit issued for the activity which the person has carried out or is about to carry

out or intends to carry out;
(b) detain the person for a reasonable period for inquires about the suspected commission of the offence; or
(c) detain the vessel or raft which the Director, fisheries inspector or authorized officer is empowered by this

section to detain in order to board and search until it has been searched.
(2) A person who without reasonable excuse—

(a) fails to give the person’s name and address or to produce the person’s proof of identity when required to



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 5

do so under subsection (1);
(b) gives a false or misleading name or address; or
(c) fails to produce the certificate of registration or research fishing permit on request,

commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.
(Added 13 of 2012 s. 12)


Section: 7B Arrest without warrant 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If the Director or a fisheries inspector or authorized officer has reasonable grounds for suspecting that a person
has committed an offence under this Ordinance and it appears that service of a summons is impracticable
because of any reason set out in subsection (2), the Director, fisheries inspector or authorized officer may arrest
the person without a warrant.

(2) The reasons are—
(a) the name of the person is unknown to, and cannot readily be ascertained by, the Director, fisheries inspector

or authorized officer;
(b) there are reasonable grounds for doubting whether a name given by the person as the person’s name is the

person’s real name;
(c) the person has failed to give a satisfactory address for service; and
(d) there are reasonable grounds for doubting whether an address given by the person is a satisfactory address

for service.
(3) For the purposes of subsection (1), the Director, fisheries inspector or authorized officer may use all means

necessary to effect the arrest.
(4) If the Director or a fisheries inspector or authorized officer arrests a person under this section, the Director,

fisheries inspector or authorized officer must as soon as possible take the person to the nearest police station or
hand the person over to the custody of a police officer to be dealt with in accordance with the Police Force
Ordinance (Cap 232).

(Added 13 of 2012 s. 12)

Section: 7C Obstruction, etc. 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


A person who without reasonable excuse—
(a) obstructs the Director or a fisheries inspector or authorized officer in the exercise of any power or the

performance of any duty or function conferred or imposed on the Director, fisheries inspector or authorized
officer under this Ordinance; or

(b) fails to comply with any instruction given under this Ordinance,
commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 5 and to imprisonment for 3 months.

(Added 13 of 2012 s. 12)

Section: 8 Presumptions E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


(1) Any explosive or toxic substance found in the possession or control of any person engaged in fishing or in any
vessel or in any premises or place used in whole or in part for the storage of fishing equipment or fish, shall be
deemed, until the contrary is proved, to be possessed, stored or used for the purpose of fishing.

(2) The master or other person in charge of any vessel or the person in control of any premises or place used in
whole or in part for the storage of fishing equipment or fish in which any explosive or toxic substance is found
shall be deemed, until the contrary is proved, to be in possession or control of such explosive or toxic substance
for the purpose of fishing.

(3) Where any vessel is found to have on board any explosive or toxic substance or any premises or place used in
whole or in part for the storage of fishing equipment or fish is found to contain any explosive or toxic substance,
any fish found in such vessel, premises or place shall, until the contrary is proved, be deemed to have been
captured by means of such explosive or toxic substance.

(4) Where any vessel is found to have on board any fish which has been killed, stupefied or otherwise injured by
any explosive or toxic substance, such vessel shall, until the contrary is proved, be deemed to have been used for
the capture of such fish by means of explosive or toxic substance.



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Section: 9 Proof of cause of death, injury or stupefaction of fish E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


Where in any case the cause of death, injury or stupefaction of any fish is in question, a certificate purporting to be
signed by an authorized officer shall be prima facie evidence in any court as to the cause of death, injury or
stupefaction of the fish.

(Amended 68 of 1987 s. 9)

Section: 10 (Repealed 13 of 2012 s. 14) 13 of 2012 15/06/2012




Part: 4 Control on Fishing 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(Part 4 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)

Section: 11 General control on fishing 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) No person may be engaged in fishing with the use or aid of a vessel in any area of the waters of Hong Kong,
other than in a fish pond or reservoir, unless—
(a) the vessel is a registered vessel or an ancillary vessel of a registered vessel, and the fishing does not

contravene section 15 and is in accordance with any conditions imposed under section 16;
(b) the person is so engaged under and in accordance with a valid research fishing permit and section 28 is not

contravened; or
(c) the vessel is—

(i) a vessel in respect of which there is a valid operating licence; or
(ii) a vessel that is neither designed nor equipped to be used primarily for fishing,

and the fishing is an activity specified in Schedule 2.
(2) A person who without reasonable excuse contravenes subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on

conviction to a fine at level 6 and to imprisonment for 6 months.

Section: 12 Liability of owner, certificate holder, master, coxswain,

permit holder or other person in charge of vessel
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



If a contravention of section 11 has taken place with the use or aid of a vessel, each of the following persons also
commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 6 and to imprisonment for 6 months—

(a) the owner, certificate holder, master, coxswain, permit holder or other person in charge of the vessel if he or
she was on board the vessel when the contravention was committed; and

(b) the owner, certificate holder or permit holder if he or she was not on board the vessel when the
contravention was committed but knowingly permitted or assisted in the contravention.


Part: 5 Registration of Local Fishing Vessels 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(Part 5 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)

Section: 13 Register of local fishing vessels 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director must keep a register of registered vessels for the purposes of this Ordinance.
(2) The register is to contain, in respect of every registered vessel—

(a) the name and address of the certificate holder and any other particulars or information of the certificate
holder as the Director may consider necessary for the purposes of this Ordinance;

(b) the certificate of ownership number, engine power and maximum number of ancillary vessels (if any) of the
vessel;

(c) the date of registration of the vessel under section 14;
(d) any conditions imposed under section 16; and



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 7

(e) any other vessel particulars or other information as the Director thinks fit.
(3) The register may be kept in a form the Director considers appropriate, including in a form other than a

documentary form as long as the information recorded under subsection (2) is capable of being reproduced in a
legible form.

(4) The register (including the names of certificate holders but no other particulars or information concerning them)
is to be made available for inspection by any person at the headquarters of the Agriculture, Fisheries and
Conservation Department during the hours when the office is normally open to the public.

(5) Copies of entries in the register as the Director may determine may be obtained from the Director.

Section: 14 Registration of local fishing vessels 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may, on application—
(a) by the owner of a local fishing vessel in respect of which there is a valid operating licence on the

commencement date;
(b) by the owner of a local fishing vessel—

(i) acquired or constructed after the commencement date pursuant to an Approval-in-Principle Letter
issued by the Director of Marine to acquire or construct a fishing vessel which was valid on the
commencement date; and

(ii) in respect of which there is a valid operating licence; or
(c) by the owner of a local fishing vessel under section 19 or 21,

register the vessel for the purposes of this Ordinance and issue a certificate of registration to the applicant.
(2) An application under subsection (1)(a) or (b) must be made within 12 months immediately after the

commencement date.
(3) Despite subsection (2), an application may be made under subsection (1)(a) or (b) if the applicant shows to the

satisfaction of the Director that—
(a) the failure to make the application within the time specified in subsection (2) was not due to the applicant’

s default; and
(b) the applicant exercised due diligence to ensure that the application would be made as soon as practicable

after the commencement date.
(4) A certificate of registration issued under this section must contain the name of the certificate holder and the

information referred to in section 13(2)(b), (c), (d) and (e).
(5) If the Director refuses an application made under subsection (1) or section 19 or 21, the Director must send a

notice of refusal to the applicant within 14 days from the date of the decision.
(6) In this section—
Approval-in-Principle Letter (原則批准書) means a letter issued by the Director of Marine which approves in

principle a proposal to acquire or construct a fishing vessel.

Section: 15 Engine power and number of ancillary vessels must not be

exceeded
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



No fishing (other than an activity specified in Schedule 2) with the use or aid of a registered vessel or any of its
ancillary vessels may be carried out within the waters of Hong Kong if—

(a) the engine power of the vessel; or
(b) the maximum number of ancillary vessels the vessel has,

exceeds that specified in the certificate of registration in relation to the registered vessel.

Section: 16 Conditions regulating fishing 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may impose any conditions in accordance with which fishing with the use or aid of a registered
vessel may be carried out as the Director thinks fit, including but not limited to—
(a) the area within which any fishing may be carried out, which may include any fisheries protection areas;
(b) the period during which any fishing in any such area may be carried out; and
(c) the fishing methods that may be employed and the fishing gear that may be used on the vessel.



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 8

(2) Nothing in this section is to be construed as enabling the Director to impose any condition that is inconsistent
with any provision of this Ordinance.


Section: 17 Alteration to conditions of registration 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may, either on the Director’s own volition or on application by a registered vessel’s certificate
holder, add, remove or amend any conditions imposed under section 16 in relation to that vessel.

(2) If the Director adds, removes or amends any condition on the Director’s own volition, the Director must—
(a) send a notice to the certificate holder notifying the addition, removal or amendment;
(b) update the register accordingly; and
(c) issue a new certificate of registration to the certificate holder within 14 days of the update.

(3) An addition, removal or amendment of a condition under subsection (1) becomes effective on the date specified
in the new certificate of registration and the original certificate ceases to be valid on the same date.

(4) If the Director refuses an application made under subsection (1), the Director must send a notice of refusal to the
applicant within 14 days from the date of the decision.


Section: 18 Refusal of registration 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


The Director must refuse to register a vessel under section 14 if—
(a) the applicant fails to produce for inspection a valid operating licence in respect of the vessel;
(b) the applicant fails to produce the vessel (including its ancillary vessels) in respect of which the application

has been made for inspection on request; or
(c) the Director is not satisfied that the vessel in respect of which the application is made—

(i) is designed and equipped to be used primarily for fishing; and
(ii) is likely to be used for fishing which will not contravene any provision of this Ordinance.


Section: 19 Registration of replacement vessels 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may register a local fishing vessel under section 14 in respect of which there is a valid operating
licence on application by the owner of the vessel under this section if the application is supported by—
(a) a notice given by a certificate holder in relation to a vessel the registration of which has been cancelled

within 2 years before the application by virtue of section 22(1)(a) or a notice received under section
22(1)(b); or

(b) a notice given by the certificate holder in relation to a registered vessel to cancel the registration of the
registered vessel.

(2) The registration of a registered vessel referred to in subsection (1)(b) is cancelled on the registration of the local
fishing vessel for which the application for registration is made.

(3) The engine power of the local fishing vessel referred to in subsection (1) must not be greater than—
(a) the engine power of the vessel the registration of which has been cancelled; or
(b) (if the application is supported by 2 notices) the total engine power of the 2 vessels the registration of which

has been cancelled.

Section: 20 Change of ownership 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If there is a change of ownership of a registered vessel, the certificate holder must send a notice of change of
ownership and return the certificate of registration to the Director within 14 days of the change.

(2) The new owner of a registered vessel in respect of which a notice has been given under subsection (1) may apply
to the Director within 14 days of the change of ownership for the issue of a new certificate of registration.

(3) On receipt of a notice given under subsection (1) and an application made under subsection (2), the Director is to
amend the register to reflect the change of ownership and issue a new certificate of registration to the applicant.





Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 9

Section: 21 Registration of former trawlers or their replacements 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) An application under this section for registration under section 14—
(a) may only be made by the owner of a local fishing vessel in respect of which there is a valid operating

licence; and
(b) must be accompanied by a certificate of eligibility for registration.

(2) An application under this section must be made in accordance with such terms and time limit (if any) as may be
specified in the certificate of eligibility for registration.

(3) The Director must not register a vessel on application made under subsection (1) unless the Director is satisfied
that trawling with the use or aid of the vessel in respect of which the application is made is unlikely.

(4) In this section—
certificate of eligibility for registration (合資格登記證明書) means a certificate of eligibility for registration issued

by the Director in relation to a trawler—
(a) in respect of which there is a valid operating licence on the commencement date; and
(b) affected by the trawl ban introduced by the Fisheries Protection (Specification of Apparatus) (Amendment)

Notice 2011 (L.N. 45 of 2011).

Section: 22 Grounds for cancellation of registration and return of

certificate
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



(1) The Director must cancel the registration of a registered vessel if the Director—
(a) is satisfied that—

(i) the vessel is dispatched permanently from Hong Kong;
(ii) the vessel is lost or destroyed;
(iii) the operating licence of the vessel is cancelled;
(iv) the vessel ceases to be a vessel designed and equipped to be used primarily for fishing; or

(b) receives a written notice to cancel the registration from the certificate holder.
(2) The Director may cancel the registration of a registered vessel if the Director is satisfied that the registration was

made as a result of a false representation of any fact made by the applicant or an unlawful act of the applicant.
(3) The certificate holder in relation to a registered vessel must notify the Director by notice in writing within 14

days after the occurrence of any event set out in subsection (1)(a)(i), (ii), (iii) and (iv) and at the same time
deliver to the Director the certificate of registration issued in respect of the vessel.

(4) A person who without reasonable excuse contravenes subsection (3) commits an offence and is liable on
conviction to a fine at level 3.


Section: 23 Notice to be sent and representations 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If the Director intends to cancel a registration by reason of section 22(1)(a) or (2), the Director must send a
notice to the certificate holder.

(2) A notice sent under subsection (1) must state—
(a) the fact that the Director intends to cancel the registration;
(b) the reasons for the intended cancellation; and
(c) that the certificate holder may make written representations to the Director within 21 days from the date of

the notice.

Section: 24 Cancellation of registration 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If, having considered any representations referred to in section 23(2)(c), the Director decides to cancel a
registration, the Director must send a notice of cancellation to the certificate holder.

(2) If no appeal is lodged under section 33, the certificate holder must, within 21 days from the date of sending of a
notice under subsection (1), return the certificate of registration to the Director.

(3) A person who without reasonable excuse fails to comply with subsection (2) commits an offence and is liable on
conviction to a fine at level 3.



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 10

(4) Subject to Part 8, the Director’s decision under subsection (1) takes effect 21 days after the notice is sent under
that subsection.


Part: 6 Research Fishing Permits 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(Part 6 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)

Section: 25 Issue and renewal of research fishing permit 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may on application issue a research fishing permit to any person for fishing with the use or aid of a
local fishing vessel within the waters of Hong Kong for the purpose of scientific research, environmental
monitoring or related purposes.

(2) A research fishing permit must contain the following information—
(a) the name of the permit holder;
(b) the certificate of ownership number of the vessel in respect of which the permit is issued;
(c) the engine power of the vessel;
(d) the maximum number of ancillary vessels it may have;
(e) the expiry date of the permit, which must not be later than the expiry of a period of 3 years after the date of

issue or renewal;
(f) any conditions imposed under subsection (3);
(g) any other vessel particulars or other information as the Director thinks fit.

(3) The Director may impose such conditions in a research fishing permit as the Director thinks fit, including a
condition that fishing with the use or aid of the vessel in respect of which the permit is issued or renewed is
limited to such—
(a) areas;
(b) periods or dates; or
(c) fishing methods and fishing gear,

as may be specified in the permit.
(4) The Director may on application renew a research fishing permit.
(5) An application for renewal of a research fishing permit must be made to the Director not later than 1 month

before the expiry date of the permit.
(6) An application under this section made by a person who is not the owner of the vessel must be accompanied by a

written consent of the owner of the vessel.
(7) If the Director has not renewed a research fishing permit on an application for renewal under subsection (4) on

the expiry date of the permit, the permit is to, unless sooner cancelled under this Ordinance, continue in force
according to its conditions until the permit holder is notified either that the permit is renewed or that the Director
has refused to renew it, as the case may be.


Section: 26 Refusal of applications for issue or renewal of research

fishing permit
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



(1) The Director must refuse an application made under section 25—
(a) unless the Director is satisfied that—

(i) there is a valid operating licence in respect of the vessel;
(ii) the vessel is designed and equipped to be used primarily for fishing employing the fishing methods

claimed by the applicant in the application for a research fishing permit;
(iii) the fishing is for the purpose of scientific research, environmental monitoring or related purposes only;

and
(iv) the granting of the application will be consistent with the provisions of the Merchant Shipping (Local

Vessels) Ordinance (Cap 548); or
(b) if the applicant fails to produce the vessel (including its ancillary vessels) for inspection on request.

(2) The Director may refuse an application made under section 25 if—
(a) the Director is of the opinion that—

(i) the issue or renewal of the research fishing permit will not be in the best interests of promoting the



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 11

sustainability of fisheries resources of the waters of Hong Kong; or
(ii) the vessel in respect of which the permit has been issued or any of its ancillary vessels has been

engaged in fishing in contravention of the provisions of this Ordinance (or, in the case of an
application for renewal, any conditions imposed in the original permit); or

(b) the applicant has been convicted of any offence under this Ordinance.
(3) In considering an application made under section 25, the Director may have regard to such other matters as the

Director thinks fit.
(4) If an application is refused under this section, the Director must send a notice of refusal to the applicant and the

owner of the vessel who has given the written consent (if any) within 14 days from the date of the decision.

Section: 27 Research fishing permit not transferable 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


A research fishing permit is not transferable.

Section: 28 Vessel particulars to be adhered to 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


Despite any research fishing permit, no fishing with the use or aid of the vessel or any of its ancillary vessels may be
carried out within the waters of Hong Kong if—

(a) the engine power of the vessel; or
(b) the maximum number of ancillary vessels the vessel has,

exceeds that specified in the permit.

Section: 29 Grounds for cancellation of research fishing permit and its

return
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



(1) The Director may cancel a research fishing permit if—
(a) the permit holder has been convicted of any offence under this Ordinance;
(b) in the opinion of the Director, allowing the permit to continue in force is not in the best interests of

promoting the sustainability of fisheries resources of the waters of Hong Kong; or
(c) the vessel in respect of which the permit has been issued has been engaged in fishing which does not

comply with the provisions of this Ordinance.
(2) If the Director intends to cancel a research fishing permit under subsection (1), the Director must send a notice

of cancellation of a research fishing permit to the permit holder.
(3) A research fishing permit is cancelled on the expiry of the date of cancellation stated in the notice sent under

subsection (2), which must not be earlier than 21 days after the date of the notice.
(4) Unless an appeal has been lodged under section 33, a permit holder who has received a notice under subsection

(2) and fails to return the research fishing permit to the Director within 21 days from the date of cancellation
without reasonable excuse commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.


Part: 7 Change of Particulars and Production of Certificate or

Permit, etc.
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



(Part 7 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)

Section: 30 Change of particulars 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) Subject to subsection (5), a person to whom a certificate of registration or a research fishing permit has been
issued must within 7 days after any change in the particulars specified in the certificate (other than the identity of
the owner) or permit—
(a) notify the Director by notice in writing of the change;
(b) provide the Director with all information as may be necessary to enable the Director to verify the change so

notified; and
(c) at the same time deliver to the Director the certificate or permit.

(2) The Director is to amend the register (in the case of a change in the particulars of a certificate of registration) and



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 12

issue a replacement certificate or permit to the certificate holder or permit holder, as the case may be.
(3) On the issue of the replacement certificate or permit, the original ceases to be valid.
(4) A person who without reasonable excuse contravenes subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on

conviction to a fine at level 3.
(5) Despite subsection (1), no change may be made under this section to—

(a) the identity of the owner of a registered vessel; or
(b) any vessel particulars of a registered vessel that would increase its engine power or number of ancillary

vessels (if any).

Section: 31 Production of certificate or permit 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) A certificate holder or a permit holder to whom a certificate of registration or a research fishing permit has been
issued must ensure that the valid certificate of registration or research fishing permit is produced on demand by
the Director or a fisheries inspector or authorized officer.

(2) A person who without reasonable excuse fails to comply with subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on
conviction to a fine at level 3.


Section: 32 Duplicate certificate or permit 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) If a certificate of registration or a research fishing permit has been destroyed, defaced or lost, the Director may
on application issue a duplicate certificate of registration or research fishing permit, as the case may be.

(2) A certificate of registration or a research fishing permit ceases to be valid when a duplicate in respect of which is
issued.


Part: 8 Appeals 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(Part 8 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)

Section: 33 Right of appeal 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


Any person aggrieved by a decision of the Director—
(a) refusing an application for registration made under section 14, 19 or 21 or an application for the issue or

renewal of a research fishing permit made under section 25;
(b) imposing conditions under section 16 or 25(3);
(c) adding, removing or amending any conditions of registration or refusing to do so under section 17;
(d) cancelling a registration under section 24 or a research fishing permit under section 29,

may, within 21 days from the date of the notice of the decision of the Director, appeal to the Administrative Appeals
Board.

Section: 34 Pending determination 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


If an appeal is lodged—
(a) against a decision of the Director to cancel a registration or a research fishing permit or an action under

section 17, the Director may suspend the operation of the decision or action for any period before the appeal
is disposed of, withdrawn or abandoned;

(b) against a decision of the Director to refuse to renew a research fishing permit, the research fishing permit (if
expired) is to be taken to continue in force according to its conditions until such appeal is disposed of,
withdrawn or abandoned.


Part: 9 Information 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(Part 9 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)




Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 13

Section: 35 Giving and obtaining information 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


Despite any provision in any other Ordinance—
(a) the Director may obtain from the Director of Marine any particulars or information relating to a vessel

(including particulars of its owner) for any purpose in connection with any matter relating to fishing,
registration of local fishing vessels or any research fishing permit; and

(b) the Director of Marine may supply any particulars or information referred to in paragraph (a) to the
Director.


Section: 36 False statement or information 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


A person who, for the purpose of procuring, whether for the person or any other person—
(a) the registration of a fishing vessel or alteration to any vessel particulars or conditions for registration; or
(b) the issue or renewal of a research fishing permit,

makes a declaration or statement, or furnishes any information or document, knowing it to be false or misleading as to
a material particular, commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 5 and to imprisonment for 3
months.

Section: 37 Director may require information or document 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may, for the purpose of ascertaining whether any provision of this Ordinance is complied with in
respect of a vessel, by notice sent to the owner, certificate holder, master, coxswain, permit holder or other
person in charge of the vessel or an applicant for registration or research fishing permit, require that person to
furnish to the Director, within the period specified in the notice, any information or document as required by the
Director.

(2) The Director may refuse an application made under this Ordinance if the applicant fails to furnish any
information or document in connection with the application as required by the Director.

(3) An applicant who had made an application under this Ordinance or a certificate holder or permit holder must
inform the Director by notice in writing of his or her change of address within 7 days of the change.

(4) The information which may be required under subsection (1) includes information on the names and addresses
of persons on board the vessel at any time fishing is carried out with the use or aid of the vessel within the
waters of Hong Kong or any other information as the Director may require for the exercise of any power or the
performance of any duty or function conferred or imposed on the Director under this Ordinance.

(5) A person who without reasonable excuse fails to comply with a requirement of a notice sent under subsection (1)
commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.


Part: 10 Miscellaneous 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(Part 10 added 13 of 2012 s. 15)

Section: 38 No unauthorized alteration to certificate of registration or

research fishing permit
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



A person who without reasonable excuse makes any alteration to or obliteration or defacement of a certificate of
registration or research fishing permit otherwise than as a public officer performing a function under this Ordinance
commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.

Section: 39 Director may determine any form to be used 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


Any application, notice or consent that may be or required to be made or given under this Ordinance is to be made or
given in such form as may be determined by the Director.




Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 14

Section: 40 Fees 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The fee for an item specified in column 2 of Schedule 3 is payable at the time specified in column 3 of that
Schedule in the amount specified in column 4 of that Schedule opposite to that item.

(2) A fee paid under this section is not refundable.

Section: 41 Contents of notice of Director's decision 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


A notice sent under section 14(5) or 26(4) or a notice of cancellation of a research fishing permit under section 29(2)
must state—

(a) the fact that the Director refuses the application or cancels the permit;
(b) the reasons for the refusal or cancellation; and
(c) that the applicant or permit holder may appeal against the Director’s decision to the Administrative

Appeals Board within 21 days from the date of the notice.

Section: 42 Sending of documents 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) Any notice, document or information that may be or is required to be sent to—
(a) an individual, may be sent by delivering it to the individual personally, or by leaving it with some person

for the person at the person’s last known address, or by sending it to the person by ordinary mail to that
address;

(b) a company, may be sent by delivering it at or sending it by ordinary mail to the principal office of the
company.

(2) If the notice, document or information is sent—
(a) by ordinary mail under subsection (1), unless the contrary is shown, it is taken to have been received by the

addressee at the time when it would be delivered in the ordinary course of post;
(b) by electronic mail transmission, unless the contrary is shown, it is taken to have been received by the

addressee when it would be received at that address in the ordinary course of transmission.

Section: 43 Resolution of any conflicting provisions 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


If a provision of the Shipping and Port Control Ordinance (Cap 313), the Marine Fish Culture Ordinance (Cap 353),
the Marine Parks Ordinance (Cap 476) or the Merchant Shipping (Local Vessels) Ordinance (Cap 548) is inconsistent
with a provision of this Ordinance, the provision of that other Ordinances prevails to the extent of the inconsistency.

Section: 44 Amendment of Schedules 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


(1) The Director may, by order published in the Gazette, amend Schedule 1.
(2) The Director may, by notice published in the Gazette, amend Schedule 2.
(3) The Secretary may, by order published in the Gazette, amend Schedule 3.

Section: 45 Transitional 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


A person does not contravene section 11 if the person is engaged in fishing with the use or aid of a local fishing vessel
or any of its ancillary vessels that is designed and equipped to be used primarily for fishing—

(a) before the expiry of a period of 12 months beginning on the commencement date; or
(b) if an application has been made under section 14 in respect of the vessel and has not been refused or finally

disposed of.

Schedule: 1 Toxic Substance E.R. 2 of 2012 02/08/2012


[sections 2 & 44]
(Amended 13 of 2012 s. 16)



Cap 171 - Fisheries Protection Ordinance 15




1. The residue left after oil has been expressed from tea-seeds, commonly known as Cha Tsai Peng (茶仔餅).

2. Any substance containing any proportion of-

(a) rotenone (2R, 6aS, 12aS)-1, 2, 6, 6a, 12, 12a-hexahydro-2-isopropenyl-8, 9-dimethoxychromeno [3,4-
b] furo [[2,3-h] chromen-6-one;

(b) cyanide;
(c) phenthoate S-α-ethoxycarbonylbenzyl 0,0-dimethyl phosphorodithioate;
(d) permethrin 3-phenoxybenzl (1RS)-cis-trans-3-(2,2-dichlorovinyl)-2, 2-dimethylcyclopropane-

carboxylate. (Replaced L.N. 220 of 1987)

Schedule: 2 Permitted Fishing with Use or Aid of Vessels other than

Non-Local Fishing Vessels
13 of 2012 15/06/2012



[sections 11, 15 & 44]

1. Fishing by means of a line (without any branch line) with one or more hooks or jigs operated by hand.

2. Fishing with the use or aid of a hand net.

3. Fishing without the use or aid of any fishing gear.

4. Fishing, whether with or without the use or aid of any hand net, spear gun or hook, during diving supported by

self contained underwater breathing apparatus but not by the supply of compressed air to the diver through a
hose from a support vessel for the diver to breathe in and out through a regulator.

(Schedule 2 added 13 of 2012 s. 17)

Schedule: 3 Fees 13 of 2012 15/06/2012


[sections 40 & 44]


Item Particular When payable Fee
$

1. Application for registration of a local fishing
vessel under section 14, 19 or 21

On making application 195

2. Issue of certificate of registration under section
20 or 30

On issue of the certificate 165

3. Application for alteration to conditions of a
registration under section 17

On making application 120

4. Application for issue or renewal of a research
fishing permit under section 25

On making application 365

5. Obtaining a copy of entries in the register under
section 13(5) relating to 1 registered vessel

On request for the copy 37

6. Application for a duplicate of a certificate of
registration or a research fishing permit under
section 32

On making application 81

(Schedule 3 added 13 of 2012 s. 17)

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