Whaling in Japan

Essay by SparkypieHigh School, 12th gradeB-, April 2010

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Chose an incident or issue in Australia's relations with a foreign country or countries. Write an analysis ( about 1,500 words) of the topic you have chosen, assessing its significance for Australia and stating your reasons for this judgement.

Australia and Japan; Whaling Issue

The relationship between Australia and Japan can be seen as a particularly strong one, which is based around shared traded links and has grown into other branches such as economic, political and cultural activities. In terms of economic relations, Japan is Australia's principal trading partner. Both Australia and Japan also share a prime interest in that of regional stability and prosperity. However, the current debate about whaling is bringing a large amount of conflict between the two nations. Commercial and scientific whaling has become a complex debate between many pro-whaling and anti-whaling nations over the years which brings about many environmental, cultural and political issues 'Whaling: What's at stake' (Macbean 2009).

Japan believes that whaling is an important part of its economic stability. The sale of whale meat along with the variety of products that are made from whale is argued as central to the way the economy runs and without it, small communities could not function economically. Japan also claims that the hunting of whales is central to its cultural life. Whale is seen as a good source of protein that the Japanese have become accustomed to having in their diet 'Whaling: What's at stake' (Macbean 2009). The International Whaling Commission has banned whaling in small-scale coastal areas and the Japanese argue that this is causing many problems both socially and economically for those people who live traditional lives by traditional Japanese customs. Japan argues that the hunting of whales in these small scale areas is not posing any threat to whale...