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Ethiopia - Applying for a Fishing permit

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(1)An application for a fishing licence under this Act is required to make it in a writing to the Commissioner in such form and manner as may be prescribed by the Commissioner and shall contain the following:

(a)contain the particulars and description of the craft in respect of which the application is made;
(b)state in sufficient details-
(i) the method to be employed in fishing; and
(ii) the area within which it is proposed that the craft is to be operated;
(c)be accompanied by such fee as the Commissioner may prescribe.

(2) The Commissioner may, before considering an application require the applicant-

(a) to satisfy him
(i) that the craft is properly constructed and equipped.
(ii) that the form and construction of the fishing nets, fishing gear and other equipment intended for use in fishing are adequate for the purpose of the fishing operation;
(b) to supply such other information as he may require to enable him to reach a decision on the application.
Issuance and validity of licence
  • The Commissioner shall issue to a successful applicant a licence for the fishing subject to such conditions as he may deem necessary.
  • A licence issued under this Act shall be valid for one year and expire on 31 December every year.
  • Where the craft is to be operated in a body of water shared by two or more States, the owner or operator of the craft shall not be required to obtain more than one licence in a particular year.
  • The holder of a licence under this Act shall, not later than one month before its expiration, apply to the Commissioner for a licence to take effect from the expiry of the current licence.
Identification mark on fishing craft
  • The owner or operator of a craft shall exhibit the registration number of the craft on both sides of the craft in bold letters with a prefix reflecting the State of registration.
  • A person who fails to exhibit a registration number on his craft as required under subsection (1) of this section commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine of 10,000 Bir or imprisonment for a term of three months or to both such fine and imprisonment.
Restriction on use of fishing gear, etc.
  • No person shall fish with a gear constructed with net webbing of less than 76 millimeters except where the gear consists of pelagic trawl nets used for freshwater sardines, that is, clupeids, which are used with outboard engines of not more than 25 horsepower capable of operating trawl net with three millimetres cod-end; or
lift nets used for freshwater sardines constructed with three to five millimetres stretched mesh webbing.
  • No single fishing unit shall operate with a single net or a combination of nets ex-ceeding 500 metres of three millimetres mesh size and above.
  • A person who contravenes a provision of subsection (1) or (2) of this section commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine of 10,000 or imprisonment for a term of six months or to both such fine and imprisonment and, in addition, the net and catch shall be forfeited to the government of the State in which the offence was committee.

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Required Documents[edit]

  • A valid passport
  • Fishing licence
  • Craft details
  • hunting pass
  • hunting equipment Details.

Office Locations & Contacts[edit]

Ministry of Agriculture

Ato Tefera Derebew

Minister of Ministry of Agriculture

Tel. 251-116460746

Fax 251-116460651

P.O.Box 62347




Agricultural Extension Directorate

Dr. Dagnachew Beyene(Phd) Agricultural Extension Directorate Director

Tel: 251-116 460676

Mobile: 0911843053

Fax: 0116461513

P.O.Box: 62347

Ato Fikru Amenu

Agricultural Extension Deputy Director

Fax: 0116461513

Mobile: 0913620606

P.O.Box: 62347

Email: or


Ministry Of Agriculture And Rural Development

Crop Protection Departement

P.O.Box 623347 Addis Ababa


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  • All Foreigners and Resident of Ethiopia with a Fishing pass or license are Eligible.
  • Foreigner tourist must have a tourist visa.


  • Fishing for three day when you are an Ethiopian you pay 40 Bir.
  • Fishing for a year you pay 100 Bir.
  • Foreigners are required to pay 200 Bir for three days
  • Foreigners are required to pay 500 Bir for a year.


A licence issued under this Act is valid for one year and expire on 31 December every year.

Documents to Use[edit]

Please attach documents that can be used by people. e.g. links

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Sample Documents[edit]

Please attach sample completed documents that would help other people.

Processing Time[edit]

  • Processing takes 3 months to Six Months

Related Videos[edit]

Videos explaining the procedure or to fill the applications. 
Attach videos using the following tag <&video type="website">video ID|width|height<&/video&> from external websites.
Please remove the "&" inside the tags during implementation.
Website = allocine, blip, dailymotion, facebook, gametrailers, googlevideo, html5, metacafe, myspace, revver, 
sevenload, viddler, vimeo, youku, youtube
width = 560, height = 340, Video ID = Can be obtained from the URL of webpage where the video is displayed.
e.g In the following url "" Video ID is "Y0US7oR_t3M". 


  • Any person who wishes to undertake commercial fishing from natural and man made water bodies shall do so upon acquisition of a legal fishing permit.
  • Fishing is only permitted by fisherman who are in possession of a valid permit and who are accompanied by a fishing guide.
  • The catch is restricted to 5 fish per rod per day, 15 fish per trip and a maximum weight or size limit of 225 gram and 25 cm respectively. Care should be taken to release all surplus or unwanted fish unharmed.
  • The fish should be caught with a rod and line using either artificial flies and/or spinners
  • The use of nets, explosives ,poisons (Biribira) or traps is strictly forbidden
  • The lengths and weights, sex, and reproductive conditions of all fish (including all those returned to the river) should, where possible, be recorded and reported to the park ecological monitoring office.
  • This will enable monitoring of the population and modification of the regulations as necessary.
  • This information should be provided to the fishing guide at the end of each days fishing.

Required Information[edit]

  • The Fishing licence,
  • The Fishing equipment
  • Information on special safari vehicles,
  • Information on foods and drinks while in Fishing
  • The transports and transfers during the Fishing period,
  • Information on reception services at arrival and departure at the Airport as well as all taxes for the Government explorers going with the Fishing group.
  • packing and shipment of the trophies.

Need for the Document[edit]

Fishing" means the catching, taking or harvesting of fish, attempted catching, taking or harvesting of fish and any other activity which can reasonably result in the catching, taking or harvesting of fish.

A person is required to obtain a valid fishing license prior to fishing in inland waters or transporting fish taken from inland waters. A person is required to keep his/her fishing license with him/her at all times while fishing or transporting fish and must exhibit their license for inspection by any warden, department employee, guide or landowner upon request.

Information which might help[edit]

In order to ensure the implementation of ,a fishing permit the following should put into consideration.

1.Any person who wishes to establish aquaculture facility or undertake aquaculture for commercial purpose shall do so upon acquisition of a permit, as may be appropriate, from the Federal or Regional Authority. 2.Transferrig a fishing license by any means to another person is prohibited.

3) Any person who undertakes subsistence fishing,commercial fishing or recreational fishing within a national park or a reserved fishery area shall hold a written permit from the authority responsible to administer the parks.

4) Any person who wishes to undertake subsistence fishing, commercial fishing or recreational fishing /within a protected fishery area shall obtain a written permit from the Ministry or concerned Regional Authority.

5) A non-national who wishes to undertake recreational fishing shall do so upon acquisition of a written permit from the Ministry or from the concerned Regional Authority.

6) Any person who wishes to undertake subsistence fishing, commercial fishing, or recreational fishing on a fisheries resource, subject to a concession /granted according to Article 7 of this proclamation, shall do so with permission from the concerned concessionaire.

7) Fishing using illegal fishing materials, and presence near and on the water bodies holding things such as explosives, ammunition, poisons, fish narcotising plant or any device capable of producing electric current is forbidden except for the purpose of research.

8) Fishing from any water body by way of sifting is prohibited.

9) Any person who wishes to undertake fishing research on the water bodies of the country shall do so by obtaining a permit from the authorized Federal or Regional Government organ designated tp,direct research activities and, as may be necessary, the body authorized to administer water resources.

10) Any person who wishes to import or export any type of exotic live fish species shall have a written permit from the Ministry.

11) Any person who wishes to transfer live fish which has been exported with permit, or an indiginous species from one Regional water body to another Regional water body have to do so with a written 1 permit from the Ministry.

12) Any person who wishes to transfer live fish from one water body fully contained in the region into 1 another water body which is also fully contained in the same region