Icelandic Government Remains Optimistic In Wake Of WOW Air Shuttering - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Icelandic Government Remains Optimistic In Wake Of WOW Air Shuttering

Published March 28, 2019

Andie Fontaine
Photos by
OhanaUnited/Wikimedia Commons

The Icelandic government believes the economic effects of WOW Air’s cessation will only be short term, and the Tourism Minister is optimistic.

In a statement posted on their official page, the Icelandic government expresses “disappointment” that WOW could not remain operational.

As passengers seek recourse and at least 1,100 people could lose their jobs, the government is still looking on the bright side.

“The economic situation is strong and the financial sector is well prepared to meet this challenge,” the statement reads. “The economic effects will only be in the short term and calls for a reassessment of plans, but the effects in the long term will arise from developments in the market.”

Minister of Tourism Þórdís Kolbrún Reykfjörð Gylfadóttir told reporters that her ministry has been prepared for this eventuality.

“What’s happening here is what we have prepared for as very likely to happen,” she said. “This is of course disappointing and one especially feels for the employees of the company.”

While she admits that WOW Air’s failure will have some effect on the tourism industry in Iceland, one of its largest revenue generators, she is also optimistic.

“What matters most of all is to have in mind that Iceland’s economy is strong,” she said. “There is still a great demand of people wanting to come to the country and there is still unrealised potential in that regard.”

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