Ports legislation and policies

Find out more about Ports legislation and policies.

  Port Authorities Act 1999

The Port Authorities Act 1999 (WA) governs Western Australia's port authorities, covering their functions, responsibilities, concept of operations and related matters. Under the Act, the port authorities may operate as Government Trading Enterprises, with appropriate accountability to the State Government.

Prior to the passage of the Act, each port authority was established under its own individual legislation. This Act modernised and consolidated governance of all the ports under a single piece of legislation, providing the port authorities with greater autonomy while ensuring that Government retains suitable strategic controls and Ministerial directional powers.

Opens in a new window Department of Justice: Port Authorities Act 1999 (WA)

  Shipping and Pilotage Act 1967

The Shipping and Pilotage Act 1967 (WA) governs shipping and pilotage in and about ports, boat harbours and mooring control areas of the State.

A total of 9 ports and 13 commercial port facilities have been declared under the Act.

Apart from Derby and Wyndham, these ports are generally single user facilities operated by resource companies with limited guidance from the State Government, other than safety controls. However, these ports are expected to be progressively brought under the jurisdiction of relevant port authorities, after July 2014.

Opens in a new window Department of Justice: Shipping and Pilotage Act 1967 (WA)

Voluntary Guidelines for Landside Stevedore Charges

The Voluntary Guidelines for Landside Stevedore Charges are being implemented in Western Australia.

The guidelines are designed to provide increased transparency to industry, stevedore customers and the wider supply chain and will ensure consistency in the timing of notifications across major Australian ports.

DoT is responsible for the implementation of the guidelines in WA, which apply to the two stevedore companies currently operating at Fremantle Port and will set clear protocols for the notification of changes to charges by the stevedores on transport operators.

The national voluntary guidelines were released by the National Transport Commission in early 2022, following extensive consultation and endorsement from industry and government stakeholders.

The guidelines outline the following key principles:

  • Stevedore landside charges will only be changed once per annum.
  • Stevedore companies will issue a Notice of Intention to DoT and industry, 60 days prior to the proposed date for changing or introducing charges.
  • The Notice of Intention must be accompanied by detailed reasoning for the change, including all relevant supporting information or data.
  • Stevedore companies will publish the Notice of Intention on their websites, which can be accessed in the link below.  
  • Stevedore companies will receive feedback from DoT and the supply chain proponents on proposed changes, and where necessary, respond directly.
  • Stevedore companies will publish a Final Confirmation Notice of Changes on their website 30 calendar days prior to the proposed implementation date.

The full national voluntary guidelines can be found on the National Transport Commissions's website.

DP World Fremantle charges are available below:

Patrick Terminals Fremantle charges are available below:

For any enquires about the implementation of the guidelines in WA or to provide feedback, please contact stevedorechargesguidelines@transport.wa.gov.au

  Environmental policies

Western Australia's ports are governed by State and Commonwealth legislation aimed at protecting the environment.

Ports are required to comply with environmental licences approved under the Environmental Protection Act 1986 (WA) and provisions that require a port authority to manage the port environment are included in the Ports Authorities Act 1999 (WA).

The Department of Transport is the Hazard Management Agency for marine oil pollution incidents in Western Australian waters.

There are also a number of policies to manage sewage and other marine pollutants, and response to environmental incidents, in cooperation with the Department of Environment Regulation.

Environmental reporting

Port authorities are required to report any breaches of their environmental licences to the Minister for Transport and/or the Minister for Environment.

For further information, please download the Protocol for Reporting Environmental Breaches in Ports below.

Opens in a new window Department of the Environment
Opens in a new window Department of Justice: Environmental Protection Act 1986 (WA)

Handling of mineral concentrates in WA ports

The Department of Transport has developed guidelines on acceptable practices for the transport, handling and export of specified mineral concentrates through West Australian ports.

The purpose of this guide is to reduce the risk of impact of these materials on the environment and on public health.

It was developed in consultation with the Departments of Health, Environmental Protection Authority, Chamber of Minerals and Energy WA, Ports WA and ChemCentre.

Please download the guide below.

Opens in a new window Department of Health
Opens in a new window Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) WA

Marine parks and reserves

The State and Commonwealth Governments have designated particular zones in Western Australia's oceans to restrict certain shipping, mining and recreational activities that will affect marine flora and fauna from. This will reduce the impact on the marine environment.

State marine parks and Commonwealth marine reserves are managed by:

  • WA Department of Parks and Wildlife.
  • Federal Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities.
Opens in a new window Department of Parks and Wildlife
Opens in a new window Department of the Environment

  General policies and guidelines

  Ports related links

Page last updated: Thu Jan 12 2023 10:37:55 AM