Economy overview: The economy of the Faroe Islands has been developing quite steadily since 1994, mainly as a result of an increase in fish catches and high and stable prices for it. Unemployment is falling and some sectors of the industry are showing signs of labor shortages. Positive economic indicators have helped the government achieve a growing budget surplus, thereby reducing the large public debt, mainly to Denmark. However, the near-total dependence on fisheries makes the economy very vulnerable and the current state of the fishing industry will not be able to provide a stable position for a long time. There is hope for the discovery of oil fields, which can become the basis of a more diversified economy and reduce dependence on Denmark and its economic support.
GDP: at purchasing power parity – $910 million (2000 est.).
Real GDP growth rate: 5% (1996 est.).
GDP per capita: at purchasing power parity – $20,000 (2000 est.).
The composition of GDP by sectors of the economy: agriculture: 27%; industry: 11%; services: 62% (1999).
Proportion of the population below the poverty line: no data available.
Percentage distribution of household income or consumption: for the poorest 10% of households: n/a; by top 10% of households: no data.
Inflation rate at consumer prices: 5.1% (1999 est.).
Labor force: 24,250 people (October 2000).
Employment structure: fishing, fish processing, manufacturing 33%, construction and private service sector 33%, civil service 34%.
Unemployment rate: 1% (October 2000).
Budget: revenues: $488 million; expenses: $484 million, including capital investments – $21 million (1999).
Spheres of economy: fishing, fish processing, shipbuilding, construction, handicraft production.
Growth in industrial production: 8% (1999).
Electricity generation: 170 million kWh (1999).
Sources of electricity generation: fossil fuels: 58.82%; hydropower: 41.18%; nuclear fuel: 0%; others: 0% (1999).
Electricity consumption: 158.1 million kWh (1999)
Electricity export: 0 kWh (1999).
Electricity import: 0 kWh (1999).
Agricultural products: milk, potatoes, vegetables; sheep; salmon and other fish.
Export: $471 million (free on board, 1999)
Export items: fish and fish products 94%, stamps, vessels (1999).
Export partners: Denmark 32%, UK 21%, France 9%, Germany 7%, Iceland 5%, US 5% (1996).
Import: $469 million (S.I.F., 1999).
Imports: machinery and equipment 29%, consumer goods 36%, raw materials and semi-finished products 32%, fuel, fish and salt.
Import partners: Denmark 28%, Norway 26%, Germany 7%, UK 6%, Sweden 5%, USA (1996).
External debt: $64 million (1999) Economic aid recipient: $135 million (annual grant from Denmark) (1999).
Economic aid donor:
Currency: Danish krone.
Currency code: DKK.
Exchange rate: DKK/USD – 7.951 (January 2001), 8.093 (2000), 6.976 (1999), 6.701 (1998), 6.604 (1997), 5.799 (1996).
Fiscal year: calendar year.
Telecommunications Telephone lines: 24 851 (1999).
Mobile Cell Phones: 10,761 (1999).
Telephone system: good international and local connection; domestic: introduction of digital communication system completed in 1998; there are 2 mobile communication networks: the analog NMT standard and the digital GSM standard. international: ground satellite stations – 1 Orion; fiber optic submarine cable to the Shetland Islands, connecting the islands to Denmark and Iceland; fiber optic submarine cable Canada-Europe.
Broadcast stations: AM – 1, FM -13, shortwave – 0 (1998).
Radio receivers: 26,000 (1997).
Television broadcast stations: 3 (and 43 low power repeaters) (September 1995).
TVs: 15,000 (1997).
Internet country code: fo
Internet service providers: 2 (2000).
Number of users: 3,000 (2000).
Transport Railways: 0 km.
Roads: total: 463 km; coated: 454 km; unpaved: 9 km (1999).
Ports and harbours: Klaksvik, Runavik, Tvöroyri, Tórshavn, Fugleifjer.
Merchant fleet: total: 6 ships (displacement 1,000 tons or more), total displacement 23,247 gross register tons / 11,736 long tons gross tonnage; ships of various types: cargo ships – 2, oil tankers – 1, refrigerated ships – 1, ferries for the transport of loaded vehicles – 1, coastal passenger ships – 1 (2000 est.).
Airports: 1 (2000 est.).
Airports with paved runways: total: 1; from 914 to 1523 m: 1 (2000 est.).
Airports with unpaved runways:
Branches of the armed forces: Denmark is responsible for defense; there are no organized local military forces, only a few police forces and coast guards.
Total military manpower:
Eligible for military service:
Number of persons reaching draft age each year:
Military spending in dollar terms: not available.
Military spending as part of GDP: no data available. Armed forces – note: Denmark is responsible for defense.