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Diplomatic path to the creation of the IWC

 
 

The International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling (ICRW) was signed in 1946, although the initial steps to develop the Convention date back nearly a century.  The ICRW was the culmination of a series of earlier efforts, and intensive negotiations were conducted throughout the interwar period.  Below is a timeline setting out the key events leading to the 1946 Convention and establishment of the International Whaling Commission.

 

1920          League of Nations is founded, Geneva.


1927          League of Nations Conference on Whaling is held, London.


1930          Bureau of International Whaling Statistics is established to record catches.

1931          Convention for Regulation of Whaling opens for signature, London.

1935          Convention for Regulation of Whaling achieves number of signatures required for                              ratification.  Concerns are expressed over its effectiveness.

1937          International Agreement for the Regulation of Whaling is signed, London.

1938          Protocol amending the 1937 Agreement is signed in London.

1939-45     World War Two
 

1945          United Nations is founded. (League of Nations is dissolved).

1946          International Convention for the Regulation of Whaling is signed, Washington, D.C.

Copies of some of the original documents are retained by the IWC and can be viewed by appointment.  These will be digitized and added to the IWC archive when resources allow.