Iceland Referendum 2010
Iceland held its first referendum since independence in 1944 on Saturday, March 6. The referendum concerned a controversial topic in a country which nearly went bankrupt in 2008-2009, the repayment of foreign loans which were offered by the UK and the Netherlands to save the country’s main banks from sinking. The vote on the repayment of the €3.8 billion foreign loan was sparked by the President’s refusal to sign the so-called ‘Icesave’ bill. In Iceland, if the President does not sign the bill within 14 days, a referendum must be held. The President had been pressured by protests and petitions to not sign the bill.
Prime Minister Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir said she was disappointed by the President’s decision and recently announced that she would not vote, arguing that the vote was useless because the government had negotiated a better deal with foreign lenders. Furthermore, foreign countries and the government itself argue that Iceland will need to pay back its foreign loans, whatever the vote’s result.
As widely expected, the repayment was massively rejected, with good turnout at 62.70%.
Invalid or blank votes 5.02%