10 January 2013

Working paper on the production and export structure

Working paper no. 60, „The production and export structure of the Icelandic economy: An international comparison“, by Bjarni G. Einarsson, Gudjón Emilsson, Svava J. Haraldsdóttir, Ólafur Ö. Klemensson, Thórarinn G. Pétursson and Rósa B. Sveinsdóttir. The paper describes the production and export structure of the Icelandic economy and compares it to other developed countries.

The paper finds that the composition of gross value added and investment is very similar to other developed countries with the exception of the high share of fisheries in Iceland. The organisational structure of the corporate sector is also found to be broadly similar. Despite its small size and narrow range of domestic production, the Icelandic economy is neither found to be markedly more open to trade than the average developed economy. It is, however, relatively integrated in terms of international finance. The EU and the euro area are Iceland‘s most important export markets and only a handful of countries in Europe have a higher share of exports to the EU and the euro area. Icelandic exports are however concentrated in few products and significantly diverges from the composition of exports in the average developed country with high dependence on commodities exports. Export production is also less sophisticated than in comparable countries with Icelandic export sectors less interconnected with other production sectors than in other developed countries. Despite a narrow export base, the volatility of export and terms of trade is found to be lower than among other commodity exporters.

The paper is accessible on the Bank's website: Working papers