Interview with Sigmundur Davíð, Prime Minister of Iceland by Michael Gray, National Collective.
Althing, Reykjavik, Iceland.
6th of June, 2013.
Arranged by Jóhannes Þór, Political Advisor to the Prime Minister
1) Do you think Scotland and Iceland have great opportunities to cooperate with each other?
“Without a doubt. My government is very focused on increasing regional cooperation. In addition to that I think Scotland & Iceland have a lot in common. We often feel a kinship. Icelanders are very keen on going to Scotland. We are to some extent related. Icelanders are partly Celtic. In many ways the nature is similar. We’d be very happy to see increased cooperation happen.”
2) What is your view on an independent Scotland?
“Icelanders have usually been very supportive of nations seeking independence. We have not taken a position when it comes to Scottish independence. We feel that the people of Scotland should do what is in their best interests. Whatever the will of the people is, that is something that we would support.”
3) In the event Scotland votes for independence would Iceland recognise Scotland as a nation and welcome Scotland into the world?
“If Scotland became independent through accepted legal measures we would of course recognise the country and welcome Scotland with a new, thriving relationship.”
4) Do you think that small is beautiful?
“Being such a small nation has certainly presented us with its challenges, but it has also given us advantages. We have a lot of land and resources. We have enough to maintain an independent state and welfare for all. If we govern wisely we should be able to provide for everyone.”
5) Presented with ‘Arguing For Independence’ by Stephen Maxwell and photographs.
6) Iceland is planning to set up a national oil fund. What do you think of this opportunity?
“It is in preparation for possible oil production. It is similar to the Norway example. It is in preparation so that the resources are not extracted in haste.”