From Iceland — Icelanders Not Impressed By Heavy Industry

Icelanders Not Impressed By Heavy Industry

Published March 22, 2011

Most Icelanders would like to see their country’s economy turn towards innovative industries rather than aluminium smelters, a new survey shows.
Vísir reports on the results of an online poll conducted by the business analysis company Miðlun. Respondents were asked what the most important field of employment was.
Of those who responded, 30.8% said domestic industry should be a top priority. This was followed by companies focusing on innovation (18.1%) and jobs related to the fishing industry (14.7%).
Only 13% said they believed heavy industry was the most important area of unemployment that Iceland needs to focus on. This was followed by the tourist industry, and housing servers for the internet.
There was a significant difference between the genders when it came to heavy industry, with 16.5% of men but only 9% of women giving the field top importance. By contrast, support for innovative technologies was relatively equal between genders.
Conservatives and centrists in Iceland have put a lot of faith in heavy industry – in particular, aluminium smelters – despite evidence that such projects do little to help growth. By contrast, the tourism sector is growing, and the vast majority of Iceland’s export-driven economy relies on fishing.

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