MPs Want to Reestablish National Economic Institute Skip to content

MPs Want to Reestablish National Economic Institute

By Iceland Review

MPs for the Progressive Party and the Social Democrats would like to reestablish the National Economic Institute, which was responsible for independent financial analysis and forecasts of the Icelandic economy until it was closed down in 2002.

“The National Economic Institute did a fine job,” vice-chairman of the Progressive Party Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir told Fréttabladid. “We were responsible for shutting it down in cooperation with the Independence Party and we probably shouldn’t have.”

Vice-chairman of the Social Democrats Ágúst Ólafur Ágústsson agrees. “I’m for reestablishing the National Economic Institute. It is important to have access to information from independent parties.”

Lúdvík Bergsson, party group chairman for the Social Democrats, said it had been a serious mistake to shut down the National Economic Institute in 2002 because it was the only institute responsible for research in the economy and that it is badly needed today.

“It has become evident during the current economic difficulties that it would have strengthened discussions and decision-making considerably to have such an institute in the field,” Bergsson said when proposing the reestablishment of the National Economic Institute.

Arnbjörg Sveinsdóttir, party group chairman for the Independence Party, disagrees, saying shutting the National Economic Institute in 2002 had been the right decision. “At that time the research departments of the banks were becoming much stronger and the Central Bank had the same position as it has now.”

The responsibilities of the National Economic Institute were moved to the Ministry of Finance and Statistics Iceland.

On Friday, Tryggvi Thór Herbertsson, economist and CEO of Askar Capital investment company, was hired on a six-month position to the Prime Minister’s office as a consultant on economic issues.

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