The Fishing industry is one of the key industries in Iceland,and directly employs around 7,500 people, or approx. 3.9% of the total workforce. The seafood industry contributed 8,1% to the GDP directly, and 25% if account is taken of the indirect effects of the ocean cluster. In 2016 the export production of marine products amounted to ISK 232 billion (€ 1.7 billion), a total of 580 thousand tonnes. Frozen products generated 39% of the value of exported marine products. Marine products account for 43% of the value of exported goods.

Iceland is in the 20th place among leading fishing nations in the world, with 1.1% of the total world’s catch (2014). Europe is the largest market for Icelandic seafood products, with approx. 70-80% share in recent years. Cod is the mostvaluable fish stock, accounting for approximately 43% of total seafood industry exports. UK is the single most important market for Icelandic seafood products for a very long time. There are 1,647 fishing ships in Iceland (2016), of which 747 are machine ships and 43 trawlers.


Cod (Gadus morhua) 257,572
Herring (Clupea harengus) 38,712
Golden redfish (Sebastes marinus) 50,800
Haddock (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) 41,390
Saithe (Pollachius virens) 60,237
Greenland Halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) 24,000
Ling (Molva molva) 8,598
Atlantic wolffish (Anarhichas lupus) 8,540

Photo: Friðþjófur Helgason