Tasmania is to become the first Australian state to recognise gay marriages performed abroad.

They will be recognised as Tasmanian deeds of relationship, which are similar to civil partnerships.

The amendment was made to the Relationships Act and passed the upper house without opposition.

Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesman Rodney Croome said the change would help gay couples moving to the state.

“Couples in interstate and overseas unions should not have to re-register their relationship in order to secure the legal rights and protections most other couples take for granted”, Mr Croome told SameSame.au.

“It is important for Tasmanian law to respect the official, legal commitment partners make to each other, regardless of what state or country that commitment was made in.”