Chukotka natives are permitted to catch 140 whales in 2003

This year inhabitants of Chukotka (Russia's Far East) were permitted to catch 140 whales - 135 grey whales and 5 Greenland whales, which are protected by the Russian Federation Red Book. The fishery will be conducted in the water areas of the Bering and Chukotka seas, the Chukotka Association of Hunters disclosed to a RIA Novosti correspondent on Wednesday.

For the first time the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources, having defined the global quota, permitted the Chukotka authorities to divide the quota independently among the local whalery enterprises.

Whalery is the national business of Chukotka inhabitants. In recent years, the hunting on whales has been strictly limited. However, due to the protective measures the population of whales increased and there appeared a possibility of hunting on whales without any danger of their extinction, the Association disclosed.

This year Chukotka expanded productive infrastructure on treatment of objects of national businesses. The factory on currying and rendering, which will enable fishermen to increase their income, has been recently opened in Chukotka.

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