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After 31 Years, Japan resumes Commercial Whaling

Published on July 03, 2019
Japan has resumed commercial whaling after a period of 31 years but will stay within the country's exclusive economic waters.
After 31 Years, Japan resumes Commercial Whaling


  • Since 1988 Japan had switched to so-called research whaling.
  • On 1st July 2019 Whaling boats embarked their first commercial hunts since 1988.
  • Though this move is slammed by anti-whaling activists but is welcomed by Japanese whaling communities.
  • This comes after Japan's 6-month notice to withdraw from the International Whaling Commission (IWC) took effect on 30th June 2019.
  • Japanese boats will not be allowed to venture more than 200 miles (321km) off Japan's Pacific coast.
  • For a very long period Whaling has proved to be a diplomatic flashpoint for Tokyo, which justifies the practice as a Japanese tradition and thus it should not be subject to international interference.
  • The fate of commercial whaling depends on whether whale meat is widely accepted by consumers since it won't be getting as many subsidies as it used to.

About the International Whaling Commission:

  • It is an international body set up under the International Convention for Regulation of Whaling (ICRW), which was signed in 1946 in Washington D.C., United States.
  • ICRW governs scientific, commercial and aboriginal subsistence whaling practices of 59 member nations.
  • IWC headquarters are at Impington, England.
  • The objective of IWC is to provide for the proper conservation of Whale stocks and make possible orderly development of the whaling industry.


Q. Which country has resumed commercial whaling after a period of 31 years?
a. China
b. South Korea
c. Japan
d. Vietnam

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