Robert Boyes, Times correspondent and author of the new book Meltdown Iceland, says that everyone except Icelanders knew the Icelandic economic collapse was approaching as early as 2006.
In an extended interview on RUV’s Silfur Egils political talk show, Boyes said Iceland had been poorly governed by the Independence Party and that they had betrayed the nation.
Boyes said David Oddsson’s Independence Party had tried to implement a Margaret Thatcher-style economic revolution without putting the necessary strong state infrastructure in place to regulate it. Iceland is, he said, a great nation, but a weak state.
Boyes also criticised the fact that Icelanders allowed Geir Haarde to act as crisis manager for three months despite being ineffective and “David Oddsson’s lapdog”, although he later rephrased it to “very loyal”.
The politically-active Silfur Egils television presenter, Egill Hegason described Boyes’s book as the best yet written on the Icelandic economic crash.
Boyes said in the second half of the interview that he is largely happy with Iceland’s progress since the crash and was impressed with what he saw while living in Reykjavik to research his book. He still believes that Iceland can be the first of the seriously affected countries to come out of the current global crisis – pointing to the recent National Meeting and young people’s innovative new businesses as areas of success.
The interview can be viewed here for a limited time and begins 30:50 into the video.