Convention includes the Schedule attached thereto which forms an integral
part thereof. All references to "Conventions" shall be understood
as including the said schedule either in its present terms or as amended
in accordance with the provisions of Article V.
2. This Convention applies to factory ships, land stations, and whale
catchers under the jurisdiction of the Contracting Governments, and
to all waters in which whaling is prosecuted by such factory ships,
land stations, and whale catchers.
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As used in this Convention.
1. "Factory ship" means a ship in which or on which whales
are treated whether wholly or in part,
2. "Land station" means a factory on the land at which whales
are treated whether wholly or in part,
3. "Whale catcher" means a ship used for the purpose of
hunting, taking, towing, holding on to, or scouting for whales,
4. "Contracting Government" means any Government which has
deposited an instrument of ratification or has given notice of adherence
to this Convention.
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1. The Contracting Governments agree to establish an International
Whaling Commission, hereinafter referred to as the Commission, to
be composed of one member from each Contracting Government. Each member
shall have one vote and may be accompanied by one or more experts
2. The Commission shall elect from its own members a Chairman and
Vice Chairman and shall determine its own Rules of Procedure. Decisions
of the Commission shall be taken by a simple majority of those members
voting except that a three-fourths majority of those members voting
shall be required for action in pursuance of Article V. The Rules
of Procedure may provide for decisions otherwise than at meetings
of the Commission.
3. The Commission may appoint its own Secretary and staff.
4. The Commission may set up, from among its own members and experts
or advisers, such committees as it considers desirable to perform
such functions as it may authorize.
5. The expenses of each member of the Commission and of his experts
and advisers shall be determined and paid by his own Government.
6. Recognizing that specialized agencies related to the United Nations
will be concerned with the conservation and development of whale fisheries
and the products arising therefrom and desiring to avoid duplication
of functions, the Contracting Governments will consult among themselves
within two years after the coming into force of this Convention to
decide whether the Commission shall be brought within the framework
of a specialized agency related to the United Nations.
7. In the meantime the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain
and Northern Ireland shall arrange, in consultation with the other
Contracting Governments, to convene the first meeting of the Commission,
and shall initiate the consultation referred to in paragraph 6 above.
8. Subsequent meetings of the Commission shall be convened as the
Commission may determine.
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The Commission may either in collaboration with or through independent
agencies of the Contracting Governments or other public or private
agencies, establishments, or organizations, or independently
encourage, recommend, or if necessary, organize studies
and investigations relating to whales and whaling,
b. collect and analyze statistical information concerning
the current condition and trend of the whale stocks and
the effects of whaling activities thereon,
c. study, appraise, and disseminate information concerning
methods of maintaining and increasing the population of
2. The Commission shall arrange for the publication of reports of
its activities, and it may publish independently or in collaboration
with the International Bureau for Whaling Statistics at Sandefjord
in Norway and other organizations and agencies such reports as it
deems appropriate, as well as statistical, scientific, and other pertinent
information relating to whales and whaling.
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1. The Commission may amend from time to time the provisions of the
Schedule by adopting regulations with respect to the conservation
and utilization of whales resources fixing
protected and unprotected species;
(b) open and closed seasons;
(c) open and closed waters, including the designation
of sanctuary areas;
(d) size limits for each species;
(e) time, methods, and intensity of whaling (including
the minimum catch of whales to be taken in any one season);
(f) types and specifications of gear and apparatus and
appliances which may be used;
(g) methods of measurement;
(h) catch returns and other statistical and biological
(i) methods of inspection.
2. These amendments of the Schedule
shall be such as are necessary to carry out the objectives
and purposes of this Convention and to provide for the
conservation, developments and optimum utilization of
the whale resources;
(b) shall be based on scientific findings;
(c) shall not involve restrictions on the number or nationality
of factory ships or land stations, nor allocate specific
quotas to any factory ship or land station or to any group
or factory ships or land stations; and
(d) shall take into consideration the interests of the
consumers of whale products and the whaling industry.
3. Each of such amendments shall become effective with respect to
the Contracting Governments ninety days following notification of
the amendment by the Commission to each. of the Contracting Governments,
if any Government presents to the Commission objection
to any, amendment prior to the expiration of this ninety-day
period, the amendment shall not become effective with
respect to any of the Governments for an additional ninety
(b) thereupon, any other Contracting Government may present
objection to the amendment at any time prior to the expiration
of the additional ninety-day period, or before the expiration
of thirty days from the date of receipt of the last objection
received during such additional ninety-day period, which
ever date shall be later; and
(c) thereafter, the amendment shall become effective with
respect to all Contracting Governments which have not
presented objection but shall not become effective with
respect to any Government which has so objected until
such date as the objection is withdrawn. The Commission
shall notify each Contracting Government immediately upon
receipt of each objection and withdrawal and each Contracting
Government shall acknowledge receipt of all notifications
of amendments, objections, and withdrawals.
4. No amendments shall become effective before July 1, 1949.
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Commission may from time to time make recommendations to any or all
Contracting Governments on any matters which relate to whales or whaling
and to the objectives and purposes of this Convention.
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The Contracting Governments shall ensure prompt transmission to the
International Bureau for Whaling Statistics at Sandefjord in Norway,
or to such other body as the Commission may designate, of notifications
and statistical and other information required by this Convention
in such form and manner as may be prescribed by the Commission.
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1. Notwithstanding anything contained in this Convention, any Contracting
Government may grant to any of its nationals a special permit authorizing
that national to kill, take and treat whales for purpose of scientific
research subject to such restrictions as to number and subjects to
such other conditions as the Contracting Government thinks fit, and
the killing, taking, and treating of whales in accordance with the
provisions of this Article shall be exempt from the operation of this
Convention. Each Contracting Government shall report at once to the
Commission all such authorizations which it has granted. Each Contracting
Government may at any time revoke any such special permit which it
2. Any whales taken under these special permits shall so far as practicable
be processed and the proceeds shall be dealt with in accordance with
directions issued by the Government by which the permit was granted.
3. Each Contracting Government shall transmit to such body as may
be designated by the Commission, insofar as practicable, and at intervals
of not more than one year, scientific information available to that
Government with respect to whales and whaling, including the results
of research conducted pursuant to paragraph 1 of this Article and
to Article IV.
4. Recognizing that continuos collection and analysis of biological
data in connection with the operations of factory ships and land stations
are indispensable to sound and constructive management of the whale
fisheries, the Contracting Governments will take all practicable measures
to obtain such data.
1. Each Contracting Government shall take appropriate measures to
ensure the application of the provisions of this Convention and the
punishment of infractions against the said provisions in operations
carried out by persons or by vessels under its jurisdiction.
2. No bonus or other remuneration calculated with relation to the
results of their work shall be paid to the gunners and crews of whale
catchers in respect of any whales the taking of which is forbidden
by this Convention.
3. Prosecution for infractions against or contraventions of this Convention
shall be instituted by the Government having jurisdiction over the
4. Each Contracting Government shall transmit to the Commission full
details of each infraction of the provisions of this Convention by
persons or vessels under the jurisdiction of that Government as reported
by its inspectors. This information shall include a statement of measures
taken for dealing with the infraction and of penalties imposed.
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This Convention shall be ratified and the instruments of ratification
shall be deposited with the Government of the United States of America.
2. Any Government which has not signed this Convention may adhere
thereto after it enters into force by a notification in writing to
the Government of the United States of America.
3. The Government of the United States of America shall inform all
other signatory Governments and all adhering Governments of all ratifications
deposited and adherences received.
4. This Convention shall, when instruments of ratification have been
deposited by at least six signatory Governments, which shall include
the Governments of the Netherlands, Norway, the Union of Soviet Socialist
Republics, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,
and the United States of America, enter into force with respect to
those Governments and shall enter into force with respect to each
Government which subsequently ratifies or adheres on the date of deposit
of its instruments of ratification or the receipt of its notification
5. The provisions of the Schedule shall not apply prior to July 1,
1948. Amendments to the Schedule adopted pursuant to Article V shall
not apply prior to July 1, 1949.
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Any Contracting Government may withdraw from this Convention on June
thirty of any year by giving notice on or before January first of
the same year to the depositary Government, which upon receipt of
such a notice shall at once communicate it to the other Contracting
Governments. Any other Contracting Government may, in like manner,
within one month of the receipt of a copy of such a notice from the
depositary Government, give notice of the withdrawal, so that the
Convention shall cease to be in force on June thirtieth of the same
year with respect to the Government giving such notice of withdrawal.
This Convention shall bear the date on which it is opened for signature
and shall remain open for signature for a period of fourteen days
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