Faroe Islands Population: 49,709


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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 granted the Faroese in 1948, who have autonomy over most internal affairs while Denmark is responsible for justice, defense, and foreign affairs. The Faroe Islands are not part of the European Union.

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
Location: Northern Europe, island group between the Norwegian Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, about half way between Iceland and Norway
Geographic coordinates: 62 00 N, 7 00 W
Area: total: 1,393 sq km
land: 1,393 sq km
water: 0 sq km (some lakes and streams)

Size comparison: eight times the size of Washington, DC
Land Boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 1,117 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea: 3 nm
continental shelf: 200 nm or agreed boundaries or median line exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm or agreed boundaries or median line
Climate: mild winters, cool summers; usually overcast; foggy, windy
Terrain: rugged, rocky, some low peaks; cliffs along most of coast
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m
highest point: Slaettaratindur 882 m
Natural resources: fish, whales, hydropower, possible oil and gas
Land use: arable land: 2.15%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 97.85% (2011)
Irrigated land: 0 sq km (2011)
Current Environment Issues: NA
International Environment Agreements: party to: Marine Dumping - associate member to the London Convention and Ship Pollution
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Nationality: noun: Faroese (singular and plural)
adjective: Faroese
Ethnic groups: Scandinavian
Languages: Faroese (derived from Old Norse), Danish
Religions: Evangelical Lutheran 83.8%, other and unspecified 16.2% (2006 census)
Population: 49,709 (July 2013 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 20.4% (male 5,269/female 4,882)
15-24 years: 15.6% (male 4,003/female 3,738)
25-54 years: 36.8% (male 9,892/female 8,414)
55-64 years: 11.8% (male 3,018/female 2,832)
65 years and over: 15.4% (male 3,712/female 3,949) (2013 est.)
Median age: total: 37.6 years
male: 37 years
female: 38.3 years (2013 est.)
Population growth rate: 0.47% (2013 est.)
Birth rate: 13.36 births/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Death rate: 8.67 deaths/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.)
Urbanization: urban population: 40% of total population (2010)
rate of urbanization: 0.9% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.08 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.07 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.18 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 1.08 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.93 male(s)/female
total population: 1.09 male(s)/female (2013 est.)
Infant mortality rate: total: 5.82 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 6.08 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 5.55 deaths/1,000 live births (2013 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 79.98 years
male: 77.49 years
female: 82.64 years (2013 est.)
Total fertility rate: 2.39 children born/woman (2013 est.)
Literacy: NA; note - probably 99%, the same as Denmark proper
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24: total: 9.4%
male: 6.9%
female: 12.5% (2005)
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Country name: conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Faroe Islands
local long form: none
local short form: Foroyar
Government type: NA
Capital: name: Torshavn
geographic coordinates: 62 00 N, 6 46 W
time difference: UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions: 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 34 municipalities
Independence: none (part of the Kingdom of Denmark; self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)
National holiday: Olaifest (Olavsoka), 29 July
Constitution: 5 June 1953 (Danish Constitution)
Legal system: the laws of Denmark, where applicable, apply
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: Queen MARGRETHE II of Denmark (since 14 January 1972), represented by High Commissioner Dan Michael KNUDSEN, chief administrative officer (since 2008)

head of government: Prime Minister Kaj Leo JOHANNESSEN (since 26 September 2008)

cabinet: Landsstyri appointed by the prime minister (For more information visit the World Leaders website )

elections: the monarchy is hereditary; high commissioner appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually elected prime minister by the Faroese Parliament; election last held on 14 November 2011 (next to be held no later than November 2015)

election results: Kaj Leo JOHANNESSEN reelected prime minister in 2011
Legislative branch: unicameral Faroese Parliament or Logting (33 seats; members elected by popular vote on a proportional basis from the seven constituencies to serve four-year terms)

elections: last held on 29 October 2011 (next to be held no later than October 2015)

election results: percent of vote by party - Union Party 24.7%, People's Party 22.5%, Republican Party 18.3%, Social Democratic Party 17.7%, Progressive Party 6.3%, Center Party 6.2%, Independence Party 4.2%, other 0.1%; seats by party - Union Party 8, People's Party 8, Republican Party 6, Social Democratic Party 6, Progressive Party 2, Center Party 2, Independence Party 1 note: election of two seats to the Danish Parliament was last held on 15 September 2011 (next to be held no later than September 2015); results - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - Social Democratic Party 1, Union Party 1
Judicial branch: the Faroese Court or Raett (Rett - Danish) decides both civil and criminal cases; the Court is part of the Danish legal system
Political parties and leaders: Center Party (Midflokkurin) [Jenis av RANA] Independence Party (Sjalvstyrisflokkurin) [Kari P. HOJGAARD] People's Party (Folkaflokkurin) [Jorgen NICLASEN] Progressive Party (Framsokn) [Poul MICHELSEN] Republican Party (Tjodveldi) [Hogni HOYDAL] Social Democratic Party (Javnadarflokkurin) [Aksel JOHANNESEN] Union Party (Sambandsflokkurin) [Kaj Leo JOHANNESEN]
Political pressure groups and leaders: conservationists
International organization participation: Arctic Council, IMO (associate), NC, NIB, UNESCO (associate), UPU
National symbol(s): ram
National anthem: name: "Mitt alfagra land" (My Fairest Land)
lyrics/music: Simun av SKAROI/Peter ALBERG

note: adopted 1948; the anthem is also known as "Tu alfagra land mitt" (Thou Fairest Land of Mine); as an autonomous overseas division of Denmark, the Faroe Islands are permitted their own national anthem
Diplomatic representation in the US: none (self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)
Diplomatic representation from the US: none (self-governing overseas administrative division of Denmark)
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The Faroese economy is dependent on fishing, which makes the economy vulnerable to price fluctuations. The sector normally accounts for about 95% of exports and nearly half of GDP. In early 2008 the Faroese economy began to slow as a result of smaller catches and historically high oil prices. The slowdown in the Faroese economy followed a strong performance since the mid-1990s with annual growth rates averaging close to 6%, mostly a result of increased fish landings and salmon farming, and high export prices. Unemployment reached its lowest level in June 2008 at 1.1%. The Faroese Home Rule Government produced increasing budget surpluses in that period, which helped to reduce the large public debt, most of it to Denmark. However, total dependence on fishing and salmon farming make the Faroese economy vulnerable to fluctuations in world demand. Initial discoveries of oil in the Faroese area give hope for eventual oil production, which may provide a foundation for a more diversified economy and less dependence on Danish economic assistance. Aided by an annual subsidy from Denmark amounting to about 3% of Faroese GDP, the Faroese have a standard of living almost equal to that of Denmark and Greenland. The Faroese Government ran relatively large deficits from 2008 to 2010 and budget deficits are forecast for several years ahead. At year-end 2010 the gross debt had reached approximately US$900 million.
GDP (purchasing power parity): GDP (purchasing power parity): $1.471 billion (2010 est.) $1.389 billion (2008 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate): GDP (official exchange rate): $2.32 billion (2010 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 2.9% (2010 est.) 0.5% (2008 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP): GDP - per capita (PPP): $30,500 (2008 est.)
Agriculture - products: milk, potatoes, vegetables; sheep; salmon, other fish
Industries: fishing, fish processing, small ship repair and refurbishment, handicrafts
Industrial production growth rate: 3.4% (2009 est.)
Labor force: 34,710 (November 2010)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 10.7%
industry: 18.9%
services: 70.3% (November 2010)
Unemployment rate: 6.8% (2011) 5.7% (2010)
Population below poverty line: NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Budget: revenues: $1.025 billion
expenditures: $1.301 billion note: Denmark supplies the Faroe Islands with almost one-third of their public funds (2010 est.)
Taxes and other revenues: 44.2% of GDP (2010 est.)
Fiscal year: calendar year
Inflation rate (consumer prices): Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.3% (2011) 0.4% (2010)
Exports: $824 million (2010) $767 million (2009)
Exports - commodities: fish and fish products 94%, stamps, ships
Exports - partners: Denmark 23.3%, UK 20.9%, Nigeria 13.7%, US 8.8%, Netherlands 8.4%, Russia 6.9%, China 4.4% (2012)
Imports: $776 million (2010) $786 million (2009)
Imports - commodities: goods for household consumption 24%, machinery and transport equipment 23.5%, fuels 21.4%, raw materials and semi-manufactures, salt
Imports - partners: Denmark 41.9%, Norway 31.9%, Germany 8.7%, Iceland 5.3% (2012)
Debt - external: $888.8 million (2010) $68.1 million (2006)
Exchange rates: Danish kroner (DKK) per US dollar - 5.7925 (2012 est.) 5.3687 (2011 est.) 5.6241 (2010 est.) 5.361 (2009) 5.0236 (2008)
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Electricity - production: 280.3 million kWh (2010 est.) country comparison to the world: 171
Electricity - consumption: 268.8 million kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2010 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity: 100,100 kW (2009 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels: 64.9% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels: 0% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants: 31% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources: 4.1% of total installed capacity (2009 est.)
Crude oil - production: 0 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Crude oil - exports: 0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Crude oil - imports: 0 bbl/day (2009 est.)
Crude oil - proved reserves: 0 bbl (1 January 2012 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production: 0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption: 4,871 bbl/day (2011 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports: 0 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports: 4,859 bbl/day (2008 est.)
Natural gas - production: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - consumption: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - exports: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - imports: 0 cu m (2010 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves: 0 cu m (1 January 2012 est.)
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy: 744,400 Mt (2010 est.)
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Telephones in use: 20,200 (2009)
country comparison to the world: 189
Cellular Phones in use: 59,400 (2009)
Telephone system: general assessment: good international communications; good domestic facilities

domestic: conversion to digital system completed in 1998; both NMT (analog) and GSM (digital) mobile telephone systems are installed

international: country code - 298; 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 (2011)
Broadcast media: 1 publicly owned TV station; the Faroese telecommunications company distributes local and international channels through its digital terrestrial network; publicly owned radio station supplemented by 2 privately owned stations broadcasting over multiple frequencies (2008)
Internet country code: .fo
Internet hosts: 7,575 (2012)
Internet users: 37,500 (2009)
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Airports: 1 (2013)
country comparison to the world: 215
Airports (paved runways): total 1

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)
Roadways: total 463 km
Merchant marine: total 37

by type: cargo 20, chemical tanker 7, container 2, passenger/cargo 3, refrigerated cargo 3, roll on/roll off 2

foreign-owned: 28 (Iceland 4, Norway 13, Sweden 11) (2010)
Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Fuglafjordur, Torshavn, Vagur
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Defense is the responsibility of Denmark
Military branches: no regular military forces (2012)
Manpower available for military service: males age 16-49: 11,831 (2010 est.)
Manpower fit for military service: males age 16-49: 9,827
females age 16-49: 8,418 (2010 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually: male: 372
female: 373 (2010 est.)
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 Transnational Issues
Disputes - International: because anticipated offshore hydrocarbon resources have not been realized, earlier Faroese proposals for full independence have been deferred; Iceland, the UK, and Ireland dispute Denmark's claim that the Faroe Islands' continental shelf extends beyond 200 nm
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   Source: CIA - The World Factbook

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