Hvalur Seeks Whaling License Renewal Amid Legal Claim Skip to content

Hvalur Seeks Whaling License Renewal Amid Legal Claim

By Ragnar Tómas

Whaling ships
Photo: Golli. Hvalur 8 whaling vessel.

Hvalur hf. has requested a five-year renewal of its whaling licence, highlighting its constitutionally protected employment rights. The company emphasises its advancements in whaling technology and methods, expecting a prompt decision on its application.

Claim filed against the Icelandic state

Last week, Hvalur hf., Iceland’s only active whaling company, filed a claim against the Icelandic state, citing significant financial losses due to a temporary whaling ban imposed by the Minister of Food, Agriculture, and Fisheries, Svandís Svavarsdóttir last year.

The claim, supported by the Parliamentary Ombudsman’s conclusion that the ban lacked legal basis, seeks compensation for the company and its employees. The ban took effect on June 20, 2023, and remained in place until September 1 of the same year.

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In addition to the lawsuit, Hvalur hf. has also filed for a renewal of its whaling licence for the next five years, with a formal request having been sent to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture yesterday, Mbl.is reports.

In the request, Hvalur hf. refers to the aforementioned opinion by the Parliamentary Ombudsman, emphasising the company’s constitutional employment rights, a freedom that can only be restricted by parliamentary legislation.

As noted by Mbl.is, Hvalur maintains that the company has worked on and invested in the development and improvement of whaling equipment and methods, based on technological innovations and advancements in the field. “This work has led to significant and positive changes in the last whaling season,” the application claims.

The company expects a prompt response to their licence renewal application.

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