Antarctica Economics


Economy overview: According to toppharmacyschools, there is currently no economic activity, except for fishing close to the coast and limited tourism, both of which are carried out by persons arriving from outside the continent. Anglers in Antarctica have taken 119,898 metric tons of fish (official figures for the period July 1, 1998 to June 30, 1999). Uncontrolled fishing has outnumbered controlled fishing by five to six times, and illegal fishing in Antarctic waters in 1998 reportedly led to the confiscation by France and Australia of at least 8 fishing boats in 1998. Companies interested in commercial fishing in Antarctica have put forward proposals. The Antarctic Marine Life Conservation Agreement sets out recommended catch rates. In total, in the summer of 1999-2000. 13,193 tourists visited Antarctica, up from 10,013 last year. Almost all of them were passengers of 24 commercial (non-state) vessels and several yachts, which made 143 voyages during the summer period. Most of the tourist trips lasted about two weeks.


Telecommunications Telephone lines: 0 (1997).
Mobile cellular phones: no data available.
Telephone system: internal: no data; international: no data.
Broadcasting stations: AM – no data, FM -2, shortwave -1 (1998); note: information for US research stations only.
Radio receivers: no data.
Television Broadcast Stations: 1 (American Forces Antarctic Network, McMurdo Station) (1999); note: information for US research stations only.
Televisions: several hundred in the McMurdo Sound area.
Internet country code: aq
Internet service providers: not available.
Number of users:


Transport Railways:
Ports and harbours: there are no real ports in Antarctica, most coastal stations have anchorages, cargo is delivered ashore by small boats, barges and helicopters; some stations have the ability to use the piers of American coast stations, including McMurdo (77° 51’S, 166° 40’E), Palmer (64° 43’S, 64° 03 ‘w.d.); there are few suitable anchorages.
Merchant fleet:
Airports: 19; note: 27 stations hosted by the governments of 16 Antarctic Treaty countries have facilities to receive helicopters and/or fixed-wing aircraft; commercial organizations own two more aviation facilities; helicopter landing sites are available at 27 stations; runways at 15 stations are covered with gravel, sea ice, blue glacier ice or packed snow suitable for fixed-wing aircraft equipped with wheels; of these bands, one is more than 3 km long, 6 are 2 to 3 km long, 3 are 1 to 2 km long, 3 are less than 1 km long, and 2 are of indeterminate length; snow lanes adapted only for use by ski-equipped fixed-wing aircraft are available at another 15 stations; of these, 4 are more than 3 km in length, 3 are from 2 to 3 km in length, 2 are from 1 to 2 km in length, 2 are less than 1 km in length, and 4 are of indeterminate length; airports are generally subject to strict restrictions related to extreme seasonal and geographic conditions; airports do not meet ICAO standards; landing requires prior authorization from the relevant governmental or non-governmental organization in charge of the airport (2001 est.).
Airports with paved runways:
Airports with unpaved runways: total: 19; over 3,047 m: 6; from 2438 to 3047 m:3; from 1524 to 2437 m:1; from 914 to 1523 m: 4; less than 914 m: 5 (2000 est.). Helipads: Helicopter landings are available at 27 stations (2001 est.).

International Issues

International Issues International Disputes: The Antarctic Treaty takes into account territorial claims (see Antarctic Treaty [summary] under ‘Government’); there are areas claimed by Argentina, Australia, Chile, France, New Zealand, Norway and the UK (some overlap); The US and most other states do not recognize the territorial claims of other countries and do not put forward claims themselves (the US and Russia reserve the right to put forward such claims); in the sector between 90° W. and 150° W. No official claims have been made.

Antarctica Economics