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In 2013, fish products accounted for 26% of total exports and fishing and fish processing represented 9.4% of GDP. The fishing industry is also a major source of employment, accounting for 4.7% of the civilian labour force in 2013. Maintaining a healthy fishing sector is crucial to the overall economic success of the country.
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The rapid development of tourism and energy-intensive industry is exerting increasing pressures on the environmental assets upon which much of Iceland’s growth has been founded.
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Fostering competition can be a challenge given the small size of the Icelandic economy. In a number of important sectors, such as financial services, food and telecoms, only a few firms operate.
In 2014, Iceland delivered USD 35 million in net ODA (preliminary data), which represented 0.21% of its gross national income (GNI) and a 3.8% decrease in real terms from 2013. Iceland is committed to achieving 0.7% ODA/GNI, and this commitment has been accompanied by an increase in ODA both in terms of volume and as a share of GNI between 2011 and 2013.
I am pleased to open this launch with a broadly positive message. Since successfully completing its stabilisation programme in 2011, Iceland’s economic activity has recovered steadily, returning to its pre-crisis level earlier than crisis-hit euro area countries. Iceland has entered its 5th year of economic recovery and prospects are good.
The Secretary-General presented the 2015 OECD Economic Survey of Iceland and held meetings with the President of Iceland, the Prime Minster and several other ministers. Mr. Gurría also attended meetings with business and unions, and the Parliament’s Economic and Trade Affairs Committee.
Iceland has steadily recovered from the global financial crisis, with economic activity above pre-crisis levels and a number of other visible signs of normalisation, including falling unemployment, improved public finances and stronger household finances.
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Labour market conditions in Iceland further improved during the last year. In March 2015 the harmonised unemployment rate stood at 4.2% of the labour force, 1 percentage point lower than a year earlier.
Specific country notes have been prepared using data from the database OECD Health Statistics 2015, July 2015 version. The notes are available in PDF format.
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