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Iceland could stop all whale hunting by 2024

Iceland could stop all whale hunting by 2024

Whale fishing has such little economic significance that the Icelandic government expects that no new permits for whaling will be granted after 2023.

Kent Olofsson
Kent Olofsson

Today, whaling is only allowed in Iceland, Norway, and Japan, but one of the countries is about to change its mind.

Iceland's Minister of Fisheries, Svandís Svavarsdóttir, believes that there is little reason to think that fishing will continue to be allowed after 2023 when the current permit for whaling expires, Morgunbladid reports.

The reason is that whaling has very little economic significance even for those who have the right to engage in whaling, and it is difficult to make a profit from it. This is shown, among other things, because whaling has primarily ceased in recent years. Only one humpback whale and not a single fin whale have been killed in the last three years, despite being allowed to kill 200 humpback whales and over 200 fin whales annually.

"There may be several reasons for this, but perhaps the simple explanation is that it is most likely that there will be long-term losses from this fishing," says Svandís Svavarsdóttir.

That those who have a permit to fish choose not to do so, says Svandís Svavarsdóttir, shows that the economic benefits of fishing can not be great. For the government to renew the permits for whaling after 2023, it must be clear that it is economically defensible. As it is now, the economic conditions do not seem to exist. So by 2024, whale hunting may be a thing of the past in Iceland.

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