Sunday, February 28, 2010
The European Commission expressed some concerns over the independence of the judiciary in Iceland and conflicts of interest for some in public service due to close links between the political class and business interests. The size of Iceland's debt also raised some concerns. Some Member States are involved in bilateral disputes with Iceland, which may hold up the process. For example, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands believe they are owed money to repay a loan to British and Dutch investors who lost money when the online bank Icesave went under in 2008. On the other hand, Icelandic fishermen are concerned that joining the EU could force them to share their fishing rights with other Europeans, which could lead to overfishing. In light of these concerns and others, a 14-month timetable may be ambitious.