The World Factbook (1990)/Faroe Islands

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
The World Factbook (1990)
United States Central Intelligence Agency
Faroe Islands

pages 97–98

Faroe Islands
(part of the Danish realm)

World Factbook (1990) Faroe Islands.jpg

 See regional map V


Total area: 1,400 km²; land area: 1,400 km²

Comparative area: slightly less than eight times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries: none

Coastline: 764 km

Maritime claims:

Contiguous zone: 4 nm
Continental shelf: 200 meters or to depth of exploitation
Exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 3 nm

Climate: mild winters, cool summers; usually overcast; foggy, windy

Terrain: rugged, rocky, some low peaks; cliffs along most of coast

Natural resources: fish

Land use: 2% arable land; 0% permanent crops; 0% meadows and pastures; 0% forest and woodland; 98% other

Environment: precipitous terrain limits habitation to small coastal lowlands; archipelago of 18 inhabited islands and a few uninhabited islets

Note: strategically located along important sea lanes in northeastern Atlantic about midway between Iceland and Shetland Islands


Population: 47,715 (July 1990), growth rate 0.9% (1990)

Birth rate: 17 births/1,000 population (1990)

Death rate: 8 deaths/1,000 population (1990)

Net migration rate: migrants/1,000 population (1990)

Infant mortality rate: 9 deaths/1,000 live births (1990)

Life expectancy at birth: 74 years male, 81 years female (1990)

Total fertility rate: 2.2 children born/woman (1990)

Nationality: noun—Faroese (sing., pl.); adjective—Faroese

Ethnic divisions: homogeneous Scandinavian population

Religion: Evangelical Lutheran

Language: Faroese (derived from Old Norse), Danish

Literacy: 99%

Labor force: 17,585; largely engaged in fishing, manufacturing, transportation, and commerce

Organized labor: NA


Long-form name: none

Type: part of the Danish realm; self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark

Capital: Tórshavn

Administrative divisions: none (self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)

Independence: part of the Danish realm; self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark

Constitution: Danish

Legal system: Danish

National holiday: Birthday of the Queen, 16 April (1940)

Executive branch: Danish monarch, high commissioner, prime minister, deputy prime minister, Cabinet (Landsstýri)

Legislative branch: unicameral Parliament (Løgting)

Judicial branch: none

Leaders: Chief of State—Queen MARGRETHE II (since 14 January 1972), represented by High Commissioner Bent KLINTE (since NA);

Head of Government—Prime Minister Jógvan SUNDSTEIN (since 17 January 1989)

Political parties and leaders: four-party ruling coalition—People's Party, Jógvan Sundstein; Republican Party, Signer Hansen; Progressive and Fishing Industry Party combined with the Christian People's Party (CPP-PFIP); Home Rule Party, Hilmar Kass; opposition—Social Democratic Party, Atli P. Dam; Cooperation Coalition Party, Pauli Ellefsen; Progress Party

Suffrage: universal at age 20

Elections: Parliament—last held 8 November 1988 (next to be held November 1992); results—percent of vote by party NA; seats—(32 total) three-party coalition 21 (People's Party 8, Cooperation Coalition Party 7, Republican Party 6); Social Democrat 7, CPP-PFIP 2, Home Rule 2

Communists: insignificant number

Member of: Nordic Council

Diplomatic representation: none (self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)

Flag: white with a red cross outlined in blue that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)


Overview: The Faroese enjoy the high standard of living characteristic of the Danish and other Scandinavian economies. Fishing is the dominant economic activity. It employs over 25% of the labor force, accounts for about 25% of GDP, and contributes over 80% to export revenues. A handicraft industry employs about 20% of the labor force. Because of cool summers agricultural activities are limited to raising sheep and to potato and vegetable cultivation. There is a labor shortage, and immigrant workers accounted for 5% of the work force in 1989. Denmark annually subsidizes the economy, perhaps on the order of 15% of GDP.

GDP: $662 million, per capita $14,000; real growth rate 3% (1989 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.0% (1988)

Unemployment rate: labor shortage

Budget: revenues $176 million; expenditures $176 million, including capital expenditures of NA (FY86)

Exports: $267 million (f.o.b., 1986); commodities—fish and fish products 86%, animal feedstuff's, transport equipment; partners—Denmark 18%, US 14%, FRG, France, UK, Canada

Imports: $363 million (c.i.f., 1986); commodities—machinery and transport equipment 38%, food and livestock 11%, fuels 10%, manufactures 10%, chemicals 5%; partners:Denmark 46%, FRG, Norway, Japan, UK

External debt: $NA

Industrial production: growth rate NA%

Electricity: 80,000 kW capacity; 280 million kWh produced, 5,910 kWh per capita (1989)

Industries: fishing, shipbuilding, handicrafts

Agriculture: accounts for 27% of GDP and employs 27% of labor force; principal crops potatoes and vegetables; livestock sheep; annual fish catch about 360,000 metric tons

Aid: none

Currency: Danish krone (plural kroner); 1 Danish krone (DKr) = 100 øre

Exchange rates: Danish kroner (DKr) per US$1—6.560 (January 1990), 7.310 (1989), 6.732 (1988), 6.840 (1987), 8.091 (1986), 10.596 (1985)

Fiscal year: 1 April-31 March


Highways: 200 km

Ports: Torshavn, Tvoroyri; 8 minor

Merchant marine: 7 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 17,249 GRT/11,887 DWT; includes 1 short-sea passenger, 2 cargo, 2 roll-on/roll-off cargo, 2 refrigerated cargo; note—a subset of the Danish register

Airports: 1 with permanent-surface runway 1,220-2,439 m

Telecommunications: good international communications; fair domestic facilities; 27,900 telephones; stations—1 AM, 3 (10 repeaters) FM, 3 (29 repeaters) TV; 3 coaxial submarine cables

Defense Forces

Note: defense is the responsibility of Denmark