Since 1948, the Faroe Islands have been a self-governing nation under the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Denmark. They have exclusive competence to legislate and govern independently in a wide range of areas. These include the conservation and management of living marine resources within the 200-mile fisheries zone, protection of the marine environment, sub-surface resources, trade, fiscal and industrial relations, transport, communications, culture, education and research.
Although Denmark is a member state of the European union, the Faroe Islands have chosen to remain outside the union. Accordingly, the Faroe Islands negotiate their own trade and fisheries agreements with the EU and other countries, and participate actively in a range of international fisheries management arrangements and organizations.
Faroese autonomy in foreign relations is provided by a treaty between the Faroe Islands and Denmark