The government will not make an official decision on how or if Chinese entrepreneur Huang Nubo can use property in Iceland.
As reported, Huang Nubo’s recently revealed in an interview that the terms of his deal allowed him to lease some 30,639 hectares in northeast Iceland for 40 years with the option to rent for another 40 years at the lease’s end. Furthermore, his plans include not just the building of a luxury hotel, but also some 100 villas “mostly for wealthy Chinese”. Minister of the Interior Ögmundur Jónasson responded to the news by saying, “We’re not talking about some shop by Jökullsá river. If people can rent land for this length of time, it becomes more or less equivalent to land ownership.” He has called for the land deal to be reviewed, and wants to have it nullified.
The Leftist-Greens support the measure. As one of the two parties in the ruling coalition, the matter would appear to be close to an end. However, the other party in the coalition – the Social Democrats – have supported the land deal, and Huang Nubo is good friends with several prominent members of that party. Nonetheless, Social Democrat party chairperson Magnús Orri Schram told reporters that he believes an agreement between the two parties can be reached.
RÚV now reports that the matter has been sent to committee, meaning that it will not begin to see work done until parliament officially convenes again this October.