After the severe economic troubles of the early 1990s, brought on by the lowest ever catches of cod and haddock, the Faroe Islands have recovered in the last few years, with a decrease in unemployment. Nevertheless, the economy is overwhelmingly dependent on fishing and fish processing (fish products account for over 97% of the export volume), and is thus vulnerable to fluctuations in prices and the size of catches. At the beginning of the 21st century, the Faroes are vigorously engaged in exploring the potential for oil production in the seas around the islands, which may lay the basis to sustained economic prosperity. The Faroese are supported by a substantial annual subsidy from Denmark. The fishing industry is the most important source of income for the Faroes. Tourism is the second largest industry, followed by woolen and other manufactured products. Arable land covers only 6% of the total land area: the rest is grazed by sheep, and some cattle and horses. The gross national product is 7440 million Danish kroner (Statistics Faroe Islands; March 1999).

Ole Humlum

See also Archaeology of the Arctic: Scandinavian Settlement of the North Atlantic; Norwegian Sea; Scandinavian Languages

Further Reading

Berthelsen, O., A. Noe-Nygaard & J. Rasmussen, "The deep drilling project 1980-1981 in the Faroe Islands." Annales Cocietatis Scientiarum Fwroensis (Supplementum IX) (1984) Humlum, O., "The Faroe Islands; The Main Forms of the Landscape and its Evolution." In Topographic Atlas over the Faeroe Islands, edited by R. Guttesen, Copenhagen: Royal Danish Geographical Society, 1996, pp. 38-41 Humlum, O. & H.H. Christiansen, "Mountain climate and periglacial phenomena in the Faroe Islands, SE North Atlantic Ocean." Permafrost and Periglacial Processes, 9 (1998): 189-211

-, Late Holocene climatic forcing of geomorphic activity in the Faroe Islands, North Atlantic Ocean. Frodskaparrit, 46 (1998): 119-140 Johansen, J., "Survey of geology, climate, and vegetational history." Annales Societatis Scientiarum Fwroenis (Supplementum XIV) (1989): 11-15 Rasmussen, J. & A. Noe-Nygaard, "Geology of the Faeroe Islands." Danmarks Geologiske Unders0gelse, 1 series, No. 25, 1970

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