Icelandic Government welcomes investigative commission's report on collapse of Icelandic banks

The Icelandic Government welcomes the report published today by the Special Investigative Commission of the Parliament on the causes of the collapse of the Icelandic banking system. Consisting of independent experts, the investigative commission was established by the Icelandic parliament in December 2008. The report is the first comprehensive analysis of the causes of the collapse of the three largest Icelandic banks in the midst of the global financial crisis of October 2008.

"This important report will enable us to look forward by understanding what took place here in the months and years leading up to the banking collapse. We now need to acquaint ourselves with the report in its entirety. Iceland needs closure in order to fully focus on and finish the reconstruction which lies ahead. I believe that this report with its difficult and painful truths is a crucial part of that process", said Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir.

"Mistakes were certainly made. The private banks failed, the supervisory system failed, the politics failed, the administration failed, the media failed, and the ideology of an unregulated free market utterly failed. This has called for a fundamental review of many elements of our society. In that respect, democracy, the rule of law and close international cooperation have been and will continue to be our strongest weapons."

"Rigorous reform has already been implemented. My Government has systematically introduced changes to legislation and working procedures of the overall government and its institutions, but also related to the media and political parties. The investigative report is a stern reminder of the necessity for continuing this work. Iceland’s fundamentals remain strong and we will overcome the present economic difficulties."

The Icelandic Government has appointed a commission of independent experts to make further recommendations as to how the government and governmental institutions should respond to the report. In the coming days, the Government will carefully study the report’s analysis and findings, consisting of over 2000 pages, and make decisions accordingly.

A summary and excerpts of the report in English are available at: http://sic.althingi.is/

A web cast and recording of the press briefing by SIC in English will be available at www.althingi.is.



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