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Faroe Islands gained the home rule from Danish Kingdom in the middle of 20th century. Despite of its own language, flag and parliament, the Island´s international affairs and finances are governed by Denmark.

Located in the heart of the Gulf Stream, on the North Atlantic Ocean, half way between Scotland and Iceland, group of eighteen islands, nowadays attracts people from all over the world. The Faroese archipelago is 75 km wide and surrounded by over 1000 km of the coast line.

Tourism is the second largest industry of the Faroese and second country´s source of income. However the tourism industry is not the independent industry as such, but it combines all the various commerce, including transport, food and local manufacturing.

The government of Faroe Islands identifies tourism industry as a competitive and self – supporting, providing with a high level of various services, including logging and transportation. Nowadays, the government´s main concern is to develop the industry in compliance with natural environment and its resources, Faroese community and culture heritage.

The Ministry of Trade and Transport promulgates legal regulations with regards to increasing tourism traffic and natural environment. Even though, Faroe Islands together with Greenland is not a member of EU, neither EFTA, the government develops the framework for sustainable development of the industry and endeavors to improve infrastructure for transport and communications linkages with the EU and EFTA member states.

The group of islands is easily accessible as the world´s air and marine transport has been continuously more liberalized and price reduction has been noted. There is one, government owned, Faroese company which provides the transit by sea from Iceland and Denmark. It operates on regular schedule during the summer period. Despite of the increasing interest to continue the shipping operations to Faroe Island, as of last few years, no public funds were invested in the sector.

More than 80% of the foreign traffic reaches the Faroese land by the air, using the only international airport near Sørvágur on Vágar. Currently, there are three airlines operating from Vágar on regular bases. Direct connections are established with Iceland, Denmark, United Kingdom and Norway.

It is of the great importance for Faroese tourism board to establish key connections with not only northern states but also with the other countries. The initiative was taken when the bilateral agreement was established between Iceland and Faroe Islands with regards to companies ‘networking and cooperation. The Nordic Council of Ministers has been involved to focus on tourism issues in collaboration with the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

Source: Tourism Industry Policy

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