Iceland lawmakers approve Icesave repayment plan

REYKJAVIK, Aug 28 (Reuters) - Icelandic lawmakers voted on Friday in favour of a bill to repay Britain and the Netherlands more than $5 billion lost in Icelandic deposit accounts last year, a move seen paving the way for further international aid needed to repair the island’s hard-hit economy.

An official tally of the vote showed 34 lawmakers voting in favour of the bill in the 63-seat parliament, with 15 against and 14 abstentions. The government-sponsored bill authorises repayment to the two countries over 15 years.

The government had agreed a deal with Britain and the Netherlands in early June. But Icelanders became enraged by the so-called Icesave bill, fearful it could bankrupt the nation and angry at having to pay the debts in the first place.

After weeks of political jockeying, amendments were added to the bill setting a ceiling on the repayment based on the country’s gross domestic product.