The United States and Iceland held their second Economic Dialogue earlier this week, on October 27. The Economic Dialogue was jointly established by Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Iceland Guðlaugur Þór Þórðarson following their meeting in Reykjavik in February 2019.
The economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, investment, trade and economic relations were the main topics discussed at the online meeting between the delegations of the two countries. Women’s economic empowerment, investment screening and the protection of critical infrastructure were also on the agenda. A joint memorandum of economic cooperation was signed at the meeting on continued co-operation in various fields with the annual Economic Dialogue as the forum for this work.
Guðlaugur Thór Thórdarson, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Development Cooperation of Iceland, says that the Economic Dialogue is already bearing fruit. “The United States is Iceland’s most important trading partner. It has probably never been more important than now during the current crisis to strengthen our relationship and strategic ties. The economic dialogue is an important forum to exchange information, identify fields for further cooperation and take further steps to strengthen our ties in the field of economy and trade. Establishing the Economic Dialogue as an annual event and the signing of the U.S. - Iceland Memorandum of Economic Cooperation is a sign of the bridges being built to boost investment and trade between our two countries, "says Guðlaugur Thór Thórdarson, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Development Cooperation of Iceland.
Manisha Singh, Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs led a US interagency delegation and co-chaired the meeting with Nikulás Hannigan, Director General for External Trade and Economic Affairs at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Iceland.