The Governments of Canada, Denmark Norway, the Union
of Soviet Socialist Republics and the United States of
Recognizing the special responsibilities and special
interests of the States of the Arctic Region in relation
to the protection of the fauna and flora of the Arctic
Recognizing that the polar bear is a significant
resource of the Arctic Region which requires additional
Having decided that such protection should be
achieved through co-ordinated national measures taken by
the States of the Arctic Region;
Desiring to take immediate action to bring further
conservation and management measures into effect;
Having agreed as follows:
1. The taking of polar bears shall be prohibited except
as provided in Article III.
2. For the purposes of this Agreement, the term "taking"
includes hunting, killing and capturing.
Each Contracting Party shall take appropriate action
to protect the ecosystems of which polar bears are a
part, with special attention to habitat components such
as denning and feeding sites and migration patterns, and
shall manage polar bear populations in accordance with
sound conservation practices based on the best available
I . Subject to the provisions of Articles II and IV any
Contracting Party may allow the taking of polar bears
when such taking is carried out:
a) for bona fide scientific purposes; or
b) by that Party for conservation purposes; or
c) to prevent serious disturbance of the management of
other living resources, subject to forfeiture to that
Party of the skins and other items of value resulting
from such taking; or
a) by local people using traditional methods in the
exercise of their traditional rights and in accordance
with the laws of that Party; or
e) wherever polar bears have or might have been subject
to taking by traditional means by its nationals.
2. The skins and other items of value resulting from
taking under sub-paragraph (b) and (c) of paragraph 1 of
this Article shall not be available for commercial
The use of aircraft and large motorized vessels for
the purpose of taking polar bears shall be prohibited,
except where the application of such prohibition would
be inconsistent with domestic laws.
A Contracting Party shall prohibit the exportation
from, the importation and delivery into, and traffic
within, its territory of polar bears or any part or
product thereof taken in violation of this Agreement.
1. Each Contracting Party shall enact and enforce such
legislation and other measures as may be necessary for
the purpose of giving effect to this Agreement.
2. Nothing in this Agreement shall prevent a Contracting
Party from maintaining or amending existing legislation
or other measures or establishing new measures on the
taking of polar bears so as to provide more stringent
controls than those required under the provisions of
The Contracting Parties shall conduct national
research programmes on polar bears, particularly
research relating to the conservation and management of
the species. They shall as appropriate co-ordinate such
research with research carried out by other Parties,
consult with with other Parties on the management of
migrating polar bear populations, and exchange
information on research and management programmes,
research results and data on bears taken.
Each Contracting Party shall take action as
appropriate to promote compliance with the provisions of
this Agreement by nationals of States not party to this
The Contracting Parties shall continue to consult
with one another with the object of giving further
protection to polar bears.
1. This Agreement shall be open for signature at Oslo by
the Governments of Canada, Denmark, Norway, the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics and the United States of
America until 31st March 1974.
2. This Agreement shall be subject to ratification or
approval by the signatory Governments. Instruments of
ratification or approval shall be deposited with the
Government of Norway as soon as possible.
3. This Agreement shall be open for accession by the
Governments referred to in paragraph I of this Article.
Instruments of accession shall be deposited with the
4. This Agreement shall enter into force ninety days
after the deposit of the third instrument of
ratification, approval or accession. Thereafter, it
shall enter into force for a signatory or acceding
Government on the date of deposit of its instrument of
ratification. approval or accession.
5. This Agreement shall remain in force initially for a
period of five years from its date of entry into force,
and unless any Contracting Party during that period
requests the termination of the Agreement at the end of
that period. it shall continue in force thereafter.
6. On the request addressed to the Depositary Government
by any of the Governments referred to in paragraph I of
this Article. consultations shall be conducted with a
view to convening a meeting of representatives of the
five Governments to consider the revision or amendment
of this Agreement.
7. Any Party may denounce this Agreement by written
notification to the Depositary Government at any time
after five years from the date of entry into force of
this Agreement. The denunciation shall take effect
twelve months after the Depositary Government has
received the notification.
8. The Depositary Government shall notify the
Governments referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article
of the deposit of instruments of ratification, approval
or accession, of the entry into force of this Agreement
and of the receipt of notifications of denunciation and
any other communications from a Contracting Part
specifically provided for in this Agreement.
9. The original of this Agreement shall be deposited
with the Government of Norway which shall deliver
certified copies thereof to each of the Governments
referred to in paragraph I of this Article. The
Depositary Government shall transmit certified copies of
this Agreement to the Secretary-General of the United
Nations for registration and publication in accordance
with Article 102 of the Charter of the United Nations.
In Witness Whereof the undersigned, being duly
authorized by their Governments, have signed this
Done at Oslo, in the English and Russian languages,
each text being equally authentic, this fifteenth day of