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The World Factbook 2002

         
  Faroe Islands  
Flag of Faroe Islands
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  Introduction
  Geography
  People
  Government
  Economy
  Communications
  Transportation
  Military
  Transnational Issues

In general, information available as of 1 January 2002
was used in the preparation of The World Factbook 2002.


This page was last updated on 1 January 2002


Map of Faroe Islands

Legend: Definition Definition Field Listing Field Listing
   Introduction    Faroe Islands
Background:
Definition Field Listing
The population of the Faroe Islands is largely descended from Viking settlers who arrived in the 9th century. The islands have been connected politically to Denmark since the 14th century. A high degree of self-government was attained in 1948.
   Geography    Faroe Islands
Location:
Definition Field Listing
Northern Europe, island group between the Norwegian Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, about one-half of the way from Iceland to Norway
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
62 00 N, 7 00 W
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Europe
Area:
Definition Field Listing
total: 1,399 sq km
water: 0 sq km (some lakes and streams)
land: 1,399 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
eight times the size of Washington, DC
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
0 km
Coastline:
Definition Field Listing
1,117 km
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
continental shelf: 200 NM or agreed boundaries or median line
exclusive fishing zone: 200 NM or agreed boundaries or median line
territorial sea: 3 NM
Climate:
Definition Field Listing
mild winters, cool summers; usually overcast; foggy, windy
Terrain:
Definition Field Listing
rugged, rocky, some low peaks; cliffs along most of coast
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Slaettaratindur 882 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
fish, whales, hydropower
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 2%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 98% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
0 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
archipelago of 17 inhabited islands and one uninhabited island, and a few uninhabited islets; strategically located along important sea lanes in northeastern Atlantic; precipitous terrain limits habitation to small coastal lowlands
   People    Faroe Islands
Population:
Definition Field Listing
46,011 (July 2002 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 22.3% (male 5,149; female 5,110)
15-64 years: 64% (male 15,650; female 13,801)
65 years and over: 13.7% (male 2,818; female 3,483) (2002 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
0.74% (2002 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing
13.74 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing
8.69 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
2.39 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.13 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.81 male(s)/female
total population: 1.06 male(s)/female (2002 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing
6.66 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing
total population: 78.74 years
female: 82.21 years (2002 est.)
male: 75.28 years
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing
2.27 children born/woman (2002 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing
NA%
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing
NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Nationality:
Definition Field Listing
noun: Faroese (singular and plural)
adjective: Faroese
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Scandinavian
Religions:
Definition Field Listing
Evangelical Lutheran
Languages:
Definition Field Listing
Faroese (derived from Old Norse), Danish
Literacy:
Definition Field Listing
definition: NA
total population: NA%
male: NA%
female: NA%
note: similar to Denmark proper
   Government    Faroe Islands
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Faroe Islands
local short form: Foroyar
local long form: none
Dependency status:
Definition Field Listing
part of the Kingdom of Denmark; self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark since 1948
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
NA
Capital:
Definition Field Listing
Torshavn
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing
none (part of the Kingdom of Denmark; self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark); there are no first-order administrative divisions as defined by the US Government, but there are 49 municipalities
Independence:
Definition Field Listing
none (part of the Kingdom of Denmark; self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Olaifest, 29 July
Constitution:
Definition Field Listing
5 June 1953 (Danish constitution)
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
Danish
Suffrage:
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: Queen MARGRETHE II of Denmark (since 14 January 1972), represented by High Commissioner Birgit KLEIS, chief administrative officer (since 1 November 2001)
election results: Anfinn KALLSBERG elected prime minister; percent of parliamentary vote - 52.8%
note: coalition of People's Party, Republican Party, and Home Rule Party
elections: the monarch is hereditary; high commissioner appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the party that wins the most seats is usually elected prime minister by the Faroese Parliament; election last held 30 April 1998 (next to be held no later than April 2002)
head of government: Prime Minister Anfinn KALLSBERG (since 15 May 1998)
cabinet: Landsstyri appointed by the prime minister
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
unicameral Faroese Parliament or Logting (32 seats; members are elected by popular vote on a proportional basis from the seven constituencies to serve four-year terms)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Union Party 8, Republican Party 8, Social Democrats 7, People's Party 7, Independence Party 1, Center Party 1
note: election of 2 seats to the Danish Parliament was last held on 20 November 2001 (next to be held no later than November 2005); results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Republican Party 1, Union Party 1
elections: last held 30 April 2002 (next to be held no later than April 2006)
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
none
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Center Party [Tordur NICALSEN]; Home Rule Party [Helena Dam a NEYSTABO]; Independence Party [leader NA]; People's Party [Oli BRECKMANN]; Republican Party [Finnabogi ISAKSON]; Social Democratic Party [Joannes EIDESGAARD]; Union Party [Edmund JOENSEN]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
NA
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
NC, NIB
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
none (self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
none (self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
white with a red cross outlined in blue extending to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted toward the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)
   Economy    Faroe Islands
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
The Faroese economy has had a strong performance since 1994, mostly as a result of increasing fish landings and high and stable export prices. Unemployment is falling and there are signs of labor shortages in several sectors. The positive economic development has helped the Faroese Home Rule Government produce increasing budget surpluses which in turn help to reduce the large public debt, most of it owed to Denmark. However, the total dependence on fishing makes the Faroese economy extremely vulnerable, and the present fishing efforts appear in excess of what is a sustainable level of fishing in the long term. Oil finds close to the Faroese area give hope for deposits in the immediate Faroese area, which may eventually lay the basis for a more diversified economy and thus lessen dependence on Denmark and Danish economic assistance. Aided by a substantial annual subsidy (15% of GDP) from Denmark, the Faroese have a standard of living not far below the Danes and other Scandinavians.
GDP:
Definition Field Listing
purchasing power parity - $910 million (2000 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
5% (2000 est.)
GDP - per capita:
Definition Field Listing
purchasing power parity - $20,000 (2000 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 27%
industry: 11%
services: 62% (1999)
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing
5.1% (1999)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing
24,250 (October 2000)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
fishing, fish processing, and manufacturing 33%, construction and private services 33%, public services 34%
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing
1% (October 2000)
Budget:
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $488 million
expenditures: $484 million, including capital expenditures of $21 million (1999)
Industries:
Definition Field Listing
fishing, fish processing, shipbuilding, construction, handicrafts
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
8% (1999 est.)
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing
165 million kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source:
Definition Field Listing
fossil fuel: 60.61%
hydro: 39.39%
other: 0% (2000)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing
153.45 million kWh (2000)
Electricity - exports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2000)
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
0 kWh (2000)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
milk, potatoes, vegetables; sheep; salmon, other fish
Exports:
Definition Field Listing
$471 million (f.o.b., 1999)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
fish and fish products 94%, stamps, ships (1999)
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Denmark 32%, UK 21%, France 9%, Germany 7%, Iceland 5%, US 5% (1996)
Imports:
Definition Field Listing
$469 million (c.i.f., 1999)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
machinery and transport equipment 29%, consumer goods 36%, raw materials and semi-manufactures 32%, fuels, fish and salt (1999)
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
Denmark 28%, Norway 26%, Germany 7%, UK 6% Sweden 5%, Iceland 4%, US (1999)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing
$64 million (1999)
Economic aid - recipient:
Definition Field Listing
$135 million (annual subsidy from Denmark) (1999)
Currency:
Definition Field Listing
Danish krone (DKK)
Currency code:
Definition Field Listing
DKK
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Danish kroner per US dollar - 8.418 (January 2002), 8.323 (2001), 8.083 (2000), 6.976 (1999), 6.701 (1998), 6.604 (1997)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
calendar year
   Communications    Faroe Islands
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing
24,851 (1999)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing
10,761 (1999)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: good international communications; good domestic facilities
domestic: digitalization was completed in 1998; both NMT (analog) and GSM (digital) mobile telephone systems are installed
international: satellite earth stations - 1 Orion; 1 fiber-optic submarine cable to the Shetland Islands, linking the Faroe Islands with Denmark and Iceland; fiber-optic submarine cable connection to Canada-Europe cable
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 1, FM 13, shortwave 0 (1998)
Radios:
Definition Field Listing
26,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
3 (plus 43 low-power repeaters) (September 1995)
Televisions:
Definition Field Listing
15,000 (1997)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
.fo
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
Definition Field Listing
2 (2000)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing
3,000 (2000)
   Transportation    Faroe Islands
Railways:
Definition Field Listing
0 km
Highways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 463 km
paved: 454 km
unpaved: 9 km (1999)
Waterways:
Definition Field Listing
none
Ports and harbors:
Definition Field Listing
Torshavn, Klaksvik, Tvoroyri, Runavik, Fuglafjordhur
Merchant marine:
Definition Field Listing
total: 7 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 100,951 GRT/139,396 DWT
note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Denmark 3, Norway 1, United Kingdom 1 (2002 est.)
ships by type: cargo 2, petroleum tanker 2, refrigerated cargo 1, roll on/roll off 1, short-sea passenger 1
Airports:
Definition Field Listing
1 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2001)
   Military    Faroe Islands
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
no regular indigenous military forces; small Police Force and Coast Guard are maintained
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing
$NA
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing
NA%
Military - note:
Definition Field Listing
defense is the responsibility of Denmark
   Transnational Issues    Faroe Islands
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
Faroese are considering proposals for full independence; Denmark dispute with Iceland over the Faroe Islands fisheries median line boundary of 200 NM; Denmark disputes with Iceland, the UK, and Ireland over the Faroe Islands continental shelf boundary outside 200 NM

This page was last updated on 1 January 2002


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