Creative Industries Denmark
Population: 5,569,077 (July 2014 est.)
Internet country code: .dk
red with a white cross that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side; the banner is referred to as the Dannebrog (Danish flag) and is one of the oldest national flags in the world; traditions as to the origin of the flag design vary, but the best known is a legend that the banner fell from the sky during an early-13th century battle; caught up by the Danish king before it ever touched the earth, this heavenly talisman inspired the royal army to victory; in actuality, the flag may derive from a crusade banner or ensign the shifted design element was subsequently adopted by the other Nordic countries of Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden
note: the shifted design element was subsequently adopted by the other Nordic countries of Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden
Kingdom of Denmark / Kongeriget Danmark
Once the seat of Viking raiders and later a major north European power, Denmark has evolved into a modern, prosperous nation that is participating in the general political and economic integration of Europe. It joined NATO in 1949 and the EEC (now the EU) in 1973. However, the country has opted out of certain elements of the European Union’s Maastricht Treaty, including the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), European defense cooperation, and issues concerning certain justice and home affairs.
This thoroughly modern market economy features a high-tech agricultural sector, state-of-the-art industry with world-leading firms in pharmaceuticals, maritime shipping and renewable energy, and a high dependence on foreign trade. Denmark is a member of the European Union (EU); Danish legislation and regulations conform to EU standards on almost all issues. Danes enjoy a high standard of living and the Danish economy is characterized by extensive government welfare measures and an equitable distribution of income. Denmark is a net exporter of food and energy and enjoys a comfortable balance of payments surplus, but depends on imports of raw materials for the manufacturing sector. Within the EU, Denmark is among the strongest supporters of trade liberalization. After a long consumption-driven upswing, Denmark’s economy began slowing in 2007 with the end of a housing boom. Housing prices dropped markedly in 2008-09 and, following a short respite in 2010, have since continued to decline. Household indebtedness is still relatively high at more than 275% of gross disposable income in the first half of 2013. The global financial crisis has exacerbated this cyclical slowdown through increased borrowing costs and lower export demand, consumer confidence, and investment. Denmark made a modest recovery in 2010, in part because of increased government spending; however, the country experienced a technical recession in late 2010-early 2011. Historically low levels of unemployment rose sharply with the recession and have remained at about 6% in 2010-13, based on the national measure, about two-thirds average EU unemployment. An impending decline in the ratio of workers to retirees will be a major long-term issue. Denmark maintained a healthy budget surplus for many years up to 2008, but the budget balance swung into deficit in 2009, where it remains. In spite of the deficits, the new coalition government delivered a modest stimulus to the economy in 2012. Nonetheless, Denmark’s fiscal position remains among the strongest in the EU with public debt at about 46% of GDP in 2013. Despite previously meeting the criteria to join the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), so far Denmark has decided not to join, although the Danish krone remains pegged to the euro.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$211.3 billion (2013 est.)
country comparison to the world: 55
$211.1 billion (2012 est.)
$211.9 billion (2011 est.)
note: data are in 2013 US dollars
Focus Denmark is Denmark’s official English-language magazine, published twice a year in print by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The magazine targets foreign companies and other stakeholders with an interest in Denmark.
All publications published by the Trade Council are available at the Danish website markedsinformation.um.dk. Some reports are in English.