Submarine Cable Installation Permits | ACMA

Submarine Cable Installation Permits

Submarine cable installation permits

Under Schedule 3A to the Telecommunications Act 1997, a carrier may apply to the ACMA for a permit to install one or more submarine cables in Australian waters. All international cables (cables in a protection zone and cables in Australian waters that are not in a protection zone or coastal waters) require a permit to be installed in Australian waters. A permit is only required for a domestic cable if the cable is to be installed in a protection zone. Domestic cables proposed to be installed in Australian waters outside of a protection zone do not require a permit from the ACMA.

See the ACMA’s Guide to Applying for a Submarine Cable Installation Permit for further information about the types of permits available and how to apply.

An application to the ACMA for a submarine cable installation permit must be made in writing on the approved form available below:

Applicants should note that the installation of a submarine cable in waters that are outside a protection zone that has been declared by the ACMA does not exempt a carrier from State and Territory laws. Within coastal waters that are outside a protection zone, carriers are required to comply with State and Territory laws and planning approval processes that are applicable to the installation of submarine cables.

An application for a permit must be accompanied by payment of the appropriate charge per cable and the consultancy deposit (if applicable). The charges vary according to the type of permit that is applied for. Detailed information on permit charges is available in the Guide to Applying for a Submarine Cable Installation Permit.

Submarine cable permit extensions

To assist industry in understanding how the permit extension process operates, the ACMA has also developed an Outline of Submarine Cable Permit Extension Process.


For more information please contact the Networks Section:


Phone:  03 9963 6800

Post:    Networks and National Interest Section
            Australian Communications and Media Authority
            PO Box 13112 Law Courts
            Melbourne VIC 8010

Last updated: 11 September 2017