Further liberalization on the trade in agricultural products with the EU block will result in duty free importation of most farm produce, reducing the cost to the end consumer.
A recently signed agreement will now mean that more than 90% of agricultural goods, such as poultry, milk and meat, arriving in Iceland from the continent will no longer have any import duty imposed, up from 66% previously.
While nations in Europe carefully guard their agricultural output, preventing cheaper imports from putting their farmers out of business, both sides agreed to raise quotas of permissible trade in good such as dairy, beef, pork and chicken. Iceland will now enjoy similar protection that the EU impose on some 1,100 products.
“Our agreement in the field of geographical indications is part of our mutual commitment for a quality agriculture that preserves local products”, said Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development Phil Hogan.
Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs Elbieta Biekowska, added that “removing trade barriers between the EU and Iceland is a bold step forward; it means business opportunities for our food manufacturers and more choice and competitive price for consumers, both in Iceland and in the EU”.
Iceland and the EU enjoy agricultural trade of some € 236 million per year, on average.