Icelandic Krona (ISK)
Iceland’s economy is heavily dependent upon fisheries, fish processing, aluminum, smelting, ferrosilicon production, and geothermal power. More than 70% of all exports are made up of seafood products.
Situated on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Iceland is a hot spot of volcanic and geothermal activity. Natural hot water supplies much of the population with cheap, pollution-free heating. Rivers are harnessed to provide inexpensive hydroelectric power. The electrical current is 220 volts, 50 Hz, the same as in much of Europe.
The country is governed by the Althing (Parliament) which has 63 members, elected for a maximum period of four years. Elections are also held every four years for the presidency, with no term limit. The original Althing was established in Thingvellir by Vikings in 930 AD and is considered the world’s first parliamentary democracy.
Life expectancy is one of the highest in the world, and a comprehensive state health-care system aims to keep it that way. The population enjoys a high-quality public school system, including its own university since 1911.
Iceland is an island of almost 104,000 square kilometers (40,000 sq mi).
Icelandic is the national language and is believed to have changed very little from the original tongue spoken by the Norse settlers. English and Scandinavian languages are widely spoken.
Iceland has a population of around 330,000 and more than half live in the greater Reykjavik area.
The Church of Iceland is Evangelical Lutheran with 80% of the population as members. The Church is open to everyone living in Iceland regardless of nationalities.
Iceland stays on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) all year round.
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