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Settled by Norwegian and Celtic (Scottish and Irish) immigrants during the late 9th and 10th centuries A.D., Iceland boasts the world's oldest functioning legislative assembly, the Althing, established in 930. Independent for over 300 years, Iceland was subsequently ruled by Norway and Denmark. Fallout from the Askja volcano of 1875 devastated the Icelandic economy and caused widespread famine. Over the next quarter century, 20% of the island's population emigrated, mostly to Canada and the US. Denmark granted limited home rule in 1874 and complete independence in 1944. The second half of the 20th century saw substantial economic growth driven primarily by the fishing industry. The economy diversified greatly after the country joined the European Economic Area in 1994, but Iceland was especially hard hit by the global financial crisis in the years following 2008. Literacy, longevity, and social cohesion are first rate by world standards.


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Communications

Telephones - main lines in use World Ranking: 127
189,500 (2011)

Telephones - mobile cellular World Ranking: 171
344,100 (2011)

Telephone system
General assessment
Telecommunications infrastructure is modern and fully digitized, with satellite-earth stations, fiber-optic cables, and an extensive broadband network
Domestic
Liberalization of the telecommunications sector beginning in the late 1990s has led to increased competition especially in the mobile services segment of the market
International
Country code - 354; the CANTAT-3 and FARICE-1 submarine cable systems provide connectivity to Canada, the Faroe Islands, UK, Denmark, and Germany; a planned new section of the Hibernia-Atlantic submarine cable will provide additional connectivity to Canada, US, and Ireland; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean), 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions); note - Iceland shares the Inmarsat earth station with the other Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden)

Broadcast media
State-owned public TV broadcaster operates 1 TV channel nationally; several privately-owned TV stations broadcast nationally and roughly another half-dozen operate locally; about one-half the households utilize multi-channel cable or satellite TV services; state-owned public radio broadcaster operates 2 national networks and 4 regional stations; 2 privately-owned radio stations operate nationally and another 15 provide more limited coverage (2007)

Internet country code
.is

Internet hosts World Ranking: 57
360,910 (2010)

Internet users World Ranking: 129
301,600 (2009)


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  Iceland (Reykjavik):


  GPS points from Iceland (Reykjavik)

Fremravatn Westfjords

Rjupnafell Iceland (general)

Storaborg (ic03)

Brunavatn Northeast

Ellidi Northwest

Reydarvatn (ic07)

Kirkjuholl (ic23)

Atlanupur (ic21)




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