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Licences at Christmas Island

Christmas Island National Park is a Commonwealth reserve established under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act) to manage the environment of the region for the benefit of all people, present and future. The Director of National Parks uses a licence system to help regulate exclusive and restricted use commercial activities.

The EPBC Act and Regulations can be viewed at www.environment.gov.au/epbc/index.html or purchased from CANPRINT by telephoning 1300 656 863.

Individuals and other commercial entities (e.g. companies and associations) wishing to conduct commercial activities in the park, including commercial tours, need to have a permit or licence issued by the Director. The Director may issue a licence only if:

  • the activity is consistent with:
    • the purpose for which the park is declared
    • any lease of indigenous people’s land in the park
  • the activity is not likely to:
    • endanger public safety
    • unduly damage the park
    • unduly interfere with the preservation or conservation of biodiversity or heritage in the park
    • unduly interfere with the protection of other features or facilities in the park
    • interfere with the privacy of a cultural event held in the reserve by the traditional owners of Aboriginal land in the park
    • interfere with the continuing cultural use of the park by the traditional owners of Aboriginal land in the park
    • interfere with the privacy of other persons in the park
  • the activity benefits the public or persons using the park

In making a decision about whether to issue a licence, the Director may take into account whether a person to whom the licence is to be issued has, in the last 10 years, been convicted of or is subjected to proceedings for an environmental offence under the EPBC Act.

When a licence is needed

A licence may be issued for the following exclusive and restricted use commercial tourism activities:

  • scuba diving
  • safari camps (semi-permanent at managed campgrounds) or other accommodation
  • commercial bushwalking tours
  • any new activities that require exclusive or restricted use of an area.
  • caving – consistent with 6.2.12 of the Christmas Island National Park Management Plan 2014-2024.

Licences will generally be granted for a minimum period of five years and for longer terms where significant investment is required.

Tour operators will be required to hold accreditation through a Tourism Accreditation Australia Ltd (ATAP) recognised program to hold a licence. It is a licence condition to provide evidence of accreditation to the Tourism Services Officer every year.

It is important that tour operators and their staff understand and comply with licence conditions. Breaching licence conditions may lead to the licence being suspended or cancelled.

Licence fees

Licence fees will be negotiated according to the type of activity and may be annual or at a frequency agreed with the licensee.

  • A non-refundable application fee of $200 to be paid at the time that the application is submitted.
  • A fee of $200 applies to requests to transfer licences.

Licence fees will be updated on 1 January each year to maintain parity with Consumer Price Index (CPI) increases based on the previous quarter ending 31 December.

Further information

Contact the Park Manager
Phone: 08 9164 8700
Email: christmasislandnp@environment.gov.au or scott.suridge@environment.gov.au
Website: http://www.parksaustralia.gov.au/christmas/

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