Most of Iceland’s immigrant population arrived in the past five years, and the percentage of them working is higher than average for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The OECD has finished doing its yearly report on immigration among the countries within the organisation. Their report on Iceland indicates, among other things, that Iceland’s immigrants earn only about three-fourths what the native population earns.
Iceland is in 18th place in the OECD in terms of the share of immigrants in its population, with the foreign-born accounting for 11% of the total population. 52% of them arrived in the last 5 years compared with 22% on average across OECD countries. 32% come from an OECD high-income country. 76% of the foreign-born population are employed (76 and 76% of men and women, respectively), which is higher than the OECD average. The foreign-born population is less likely to be employed than their native-born counterparts. This discrepancy is partly driven by differences in age and educational distributions. After accounting for these differences, the gap between the two groups gets wider for both men and women. The immigrant household median income in Iceland is in the top half of OECD countries but its level is 24% lower than the native-born one (compared with -21% across OECD countries). 11% of persons living in an immigrant household live with income below the poverty line, compared with an average of 17% across OECD countries.
The Directorate of Immigration in Iceland has for a long time been over-worked and under-staffed, primarily due to a recent large influx of asylum seeker applications.
Hotel Reykjavík Marina, owned by Icelandair, has apologised for the name of its “Apartheid” cocktail, after the online medium Africa Is A Country tweeted about it, submitting a photograph as evidence: The Apartheid cocktail, on sale at the Marina Hotel, Reykjavik (owner: @Icelandair) pic.twitter.com/IyrQkx60bU — AFRICA IS A COUNTRY (@AfricasaCountry) December 19, 2014 Icelandair’s first response was not an apology however. After @AfricasaCountry’s tweet, but before the apology, whoever handles Icelandair’s account tweeted back, apparently missing the point completely: “Simply scrumptious, enjoy!” Icelandair offered, adding: “Happy Holidays”: @AfricasaCountry Simply scrumptious, enjoy! Happy Holidays — Icelandair (@Icelandair) December 19, 2014 In
A container intended to accommodate doctors at Landspítalinn fell off a truck by Miklabraut, Reykjavík, Friday morning. This was reported by RÚV. Luckily, the container fell on a slip road and did thereby not seriously disturb traffic. Eighteen containers are currently being stacked on the hospital’s premises by Hringbraut, for doctors’ offices. Strike and negotiations Doctors at State hospitals started their first strike action ever late October. So far, negotiations between doctors and State have not produced results. On Friday morning, representatives of the Icelandic Medical Association met with representatives of the State to continue negotiations. Last week, Prime Minister
The 250 machine guns acquired from Norway, by the Coast Guard, to share with Iceland’s Police forces, have not been returned as intended. According to the Coast Guard’s public relations manager, they are waiting for an opportunity to ship the guns back without paying hefty shipping fees. This was reported by Vísir. This October, DV broke the news of the acquired weapons and plans within the Police to arm general patrol cars with the MP5 submachine guns. Traditionally, most Police officers have served unarmed, but are backed up, when needed, by special forces. A dispute then arose between authorities within
For centuries, each Christmas, I have indulged in Iceland’s greatest culinary innovation, Skyr. Now, this beloved strained yoghurt continues to gain popularity across continents. Earlier this year MS Iceland Dairies (Mjólkursamsalan) predicted that 60 million pots of skyr would be sold internationally and 8 million pots domestically. I’ve posted a number of my personal skyr recipes on my food blog, Skyrgámur’s Scrumptious Skyr Secrets, but in honour of the upcoming season I’m guest blogging here on the Grapevine to share my Ultimate Christmas Skyr Cake – Enjoy! Skyrgámur’s Ultimate Christmas Skyr Cake Ingredients Base 200 g (7 ounces) Dates, pitted
The Central Bank of Iceland has decided to prepay 50 billion ISK (ca. €320 mi) to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). According to the bank’s statement, this was decided in the light of the bank’s “relatively abundant liquidity position”. Following Iceland’s 2008 economic crash, the country received financing from the IMF, totalling at around €1,6 billion. After the currently announced payment, authorities will, according to the Central Bank, have repaid 83% of the loan.
Only a third of Icelanders will be buying a real live Christmas tree this holiday season, report RÚV. According to a survey from MMR, artificial Christmas trees have been slowly but surely taking over the holiday tree market in Iceland. Roughly 32% of people will be buying a living Christmas tree this year compared to 40% two years ago. Meanwhile 56% of Icelanders plan to buy or put up an artificial Christmas tree this year. Taking their survey a bit further MMR discovered that those who vote for the Social Democratic Alliance or Bright Future are more likely to buy