Iceland - Country Commercial Guide
Market Opportunities
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Tourism has been a growing force behind Iceland’s economy in the past decade, with opportunities for investors in high-end tourism, including luxury resorts and hotels.  The number of tourists in Iceland reached more than 2.3 million in 2018. Tourism in Iceland contracted in 2019 and 2020 due to COVID-19, and the total number of tourists went down to 2 million in 2019 and then down to 486,000 in 2020.  As of 2022, the tourism sector had recovered, with 698,000 tourists in 2021, 1.8 million tourists in 2022, and a projected 2.3 million tourists expected for 2023. 

The startup and innovation communities in Iceland are flourishing, with IT and biotech startups seeking investors.  The data center industry is relatively new in Iceland and there is room for growth.  Iceland is a favorable location to host data centers due to its naturally cold climate (reducing energy costs), safe environment, and renewable energy.  

The film industry has been growing in Iceland for the last decade.  Iceland’s dramatic landscapes are popular as backdrops in international films and television series.  Iceland offers special tax incentives to attract film production, with the maximum tax incentive at 35 percent.

Iceland is dependent on imported consumer goods.  Potential growth areas for exports to Iceland include organic foods, fresh produce, wine and beer, computer equipment and software, children’s products, recreational goods, and clothing.

Fish farming has been growing at a rapid rate, particularly salmon farming.  Talks are ongoing about potential inland fish farming, which many locals see as the future of the industry.