The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans is changing the way commercial fishermen can apply for and renew their licences.
DFO spokeswoman Melanie Carkner says it will be closing its licensing divisions and licences will be available online by April 1, 2013.
Carkner says offices will not close as a result of the move.
DFO reports that with respect to licensing operations, it will be business as usual in all offices until the new system is fully implemented in 2013.
A letter from deputy minister Claire Dansereau to staff that was obtained by Yarmouth radio station CJLS says the change is aimed at saving money as the department deals with budget cuts.
The letter goes on to say the department will also cut spending through attrition, redeployment, planned retirement and other staffing changes.