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As a marketer, you must ensure that you are compliant with Australian consumer law when creating your business’ marketing materials. These laws include the Australian Consumer Law, which protects the rights of consumers. Marketing regulations, like the AANA Code of Ethics, regulate your use of Australia’s public spaces, such as national parks, within marketing materials. You may need to obtain a permit or a licence to undertake business activities in some of Australia’s national parks.

For example, if you are filming a television advertisement within a national park, you may need a permit.

This is particularly important on land that is sacred to Aboriginal peoples. This article will outline the rules and regulations on featuring Australian national parks within your marketing materials.

Which Activities Require a Permit?

Australian law requires you to obtain a permit or a licence when undertaking particular activities in national parks and reserves. This requirement aims to enhance the protection and conservation of natural and cultural values in national parks.

If you intend to film or photograph certain Australian parks and reserves for your business, you may need to gain prior approval from the Australian government. 

For example, the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and Kakadu National Park are world heritage areas that are leased to the Director of National Parks and Wildlife. As these parks are sacred Aboriginal land, the Director must take steps to protect the park’s unique ecosystem and cultural values. If you want to conduct certain business activities in these parks, you will need to obtain a permit. These activities include:

  • filming or photographing;
  • painting or drawing;
  • recording sound;
  • using an image of the park; or
  • using the material in a different way for a commercial purpose.

For example, you will need a permit if you are operating a tour guiding service and want to use an image of the park on your brochure. You will also need a permit if you are promoting your goods and you want to include an image of the park in a television advertisement.

Considerations for Approvals and Conditions

There may be some parts of a particular park that cannot be:

  • filmed;
  • photographed; or
  • painted.

This is because they might be sensitive or sacred in Aboriginal culture. These regulations will normally be included in the conditions of the particular park’s permit.

In the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, you will generally not receive a permit if you are advertising goods and services such as:

  • food and drinks;
  • sporting or camping goods;
  • extreme sports and racing; and
  • fashion.

There might also be conditions tied to an approved permit, such as:

  • you must complete a briefing prior to filming or photographing the park; or
  • the park’s media office must approve your advertising materials before you publish them.

Other Australian parks that require a permit in order to carry out commercial filming and photography include:

  • Booderee National Park;
  • Christmas Island National Park;
  • Pulu Keeling National Park; and
  • Norfolk Island.


You might face legal repercussions if you do not comply with Australian law and undertake business activities without a permit. You could face high civil penalties, including a:

  • $105,000 fine for an individual; or
  • $1,050,000 fine for a body corporate.

You could also face criminal charges. These include:

  • imprisonment for two years; or
  • a $210,000 fine.

Key Takeaways

There are many ways to promote and advertise your business. However, you may need to obtain a permit or licence to undertake business activities in some of Australia’s national parks. This is important as it ensures the regulation and protection of sacred Aboriginal land. If you have any questions or require assistance obtaining a permit, contact LegalVision’s marketing compliance lawyers on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page.


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