President of Iceland Requests Lower Salary Skip to content

President of Iceland Requests Lower Salary

President of Iceland Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson sent a letter to Minister of Finance Árni M. Mathiesen last week requesting a lowering of his salary in consistency with the lowering of salaries of other officials.

President of Iceland Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.

In his letter the president argues that the measure is necessary, “Because of the difficulties facing the nation,” Fréttabladid reports.

Grímsson refers to law provisions stating that it is not possible to compromise the wages of the president mid-term, however, arguing that, “The provisions do not prevent the president himself from requesting a lowering of his salary.”

On Saturday, Iceland’s Althingi parliament agreed to request from the wage council that the salaries of MPs and ministers drop by five to 15 percent as of January 1, 2009.

The president currently earns approximately ISK 1.8 million (USD 15,000, EUR 10,000) per month and a 15 percent cut to his salary would cause that amount to drop by roughly ISK 274,000 (USD 2,200, EUR 1,600).

The wage council recently refused to lower the salaries of ministers, arguing that it did not have the legal authority to do so.

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