The NAMMCO Agreement was signed in Nuuk, Greenland, on 9 April 1992 by the current members of the Commission — the Faroe Islands, Greenland, Iceland, and Norway. It entered into force 90 days later on 8 July 1992.
The agreement is built on a common concern for the rational management, conservation and optimum utilisation of the living resources of the sea. It focuses on modern approaches to the study of the marine ecosystem as a whole, and to understanding better the role of marine mammals in this system.
It provides a mechanism for cooperation on conservation and management for all species of cetaceans (whales and dolphins) and pinnipeds (seals and walruses) in the region, many of which had not before been covered by such an international agreement. [Polar bears are not dealt with by NAMMCO because they were/are managed under other international agreements].
NAMMCO area of competence is the North Atlantic Ocean, without any limits or further description set by the agreement.