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flag Denmark Denmark: Economic and Political Outline

In this page: Economic Indicators | Foreign Trade in Figures | Sources of General Economic Information | Political Outline

 

Economic Indicators

The country was strongly hit by the 2009 financial crisis, due to its high degree of openness to international trade and to the high level of financialization of its economy. The recovery has been only slight. Economic growth stalled in 2013 (0.1%). An economic recovery is expected in 2014, with growth estimates of around 1.7%, driven by private consumption stimulated by rising available revenue and a low level of inflation.

The year 2013 was a period of economic adjustment after the overheating suffered by the real estate market and the labor market. Mid-term, the government is committed to improving the state finances, yet its short-term policies are likely to deepen the deficit, which now represents 1.7% of the GDP. An increase in public spending in key areas, especially healthcare, will lead to budget cults in other sectors. "Green" taxation will increase.Other government objectives are improving the quality and effectiveness of public services, increasing workforce supply, promoting green technologies and maintaining a competitive environment in the areas of research and development.

Denmark is a wealthy country, its per capita GDP figures among the highest in the world and its social inequalities are small. The unemployment rate remains low (7%) compared to the rest of Europe.

 
Main Indicators 20112012201320142015 (e)
GDP (billions USD) 333.74315.16330.61347.20e361.34
GDP (Constant Prices, Annual % Change) 1.1-0.40.41.5e1.8
GDP per Capita (USD) 60,01956,47659e61,88564,186
General Government Balance (in % of GDP) -0.8-0.7-0.1-0.6-1.0
General Government Gross Debt (in % of GDP) 46.445.444.545.1e46.6
Inflation Rate (%) 2.82.40.80.61.6
Unemployment Rate (% of the Labor Force) 7.67.57.06.96.6
Current Account (billions USD) 19.8818.7524.1524.7025.30
Current Account (in % of GDP) 6.05.97.3e7.1e7.0

Source: IMF - World Economic Outlook Database , Last Available Data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

Main Sectors of Industry

The agricultural sector only accounts for 1.2% of the GDP and employs merely 2.4% of the population. Nevertheless, Denmark has become one of the major exporters of agricultural products. Two-thirds of its agricultural production is exported. Most of the Danish land is used for agriculture and there are more than 50,000 farmers in Denmark. Nearly 90% of the country's agricultural revenue comes from livestock production.

Denmark has limited natural resources, a fact which slows down the development of its heavy industry. However, the country has enough oil and gas reserves to ensure its energy independence. Denmark is the world's leading manufacturer of wind turbines and exports 85% of its production. The major activity sectors are: chemical, pharmaceutical and biotechnological industries.

The services sector contributes nearly three-fourths of the GDP and provides most employment.

Uranium mining has recently been authorised to begin in the autonomous Danish territory of Greenland.

 
Breakdown of Economic Activity By Sector Agriculture Industry Services
Employment By Sector (in % of Total Employment) 2.6 19.7 77.5
Value Added (in % of GDP) 1.4 22.9 75.8
Value Added (Annual % Change) -19.7 -1.8 0.1

Source: World Bank - Last Available Data.

 
 
 
Monetary Indicators 20092010201120122013
Danish kroner (DKK) - Average Annual Exchange Rate For 1 USD 5.365.625.375.795.62

Source: World Bank - Last Available Data.

 
 

Learn more about Market Analyses about Denmark on Globaltrade.net, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

Indicator of Economic Freedom

Definition:

The Economic freedom index measure ten components of economic freedom, grouped into four broad categories or pillars of economic freedom: Rule of Law (property rights, freedom from corruption); Limited Government (fiscal freedom, government spending); Regulatory Efficiency (business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom); and Open Markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom). Each of the freedoms within these four broad categories is individually scored on a scale of 0 to 100. A country’s overall economic freedom score is a simple average of its scores on the 10 individual freedoms.

Score:
76.1/100
Position:
Mostly Free
World Rank:
10/178
Regional Rank:
3/43

Distribution of Economic freedom in the world
Source: 2014 Index of Economic freedom, Heritage Foundation

 

Business environment ranking

Definition:

The business rankings model measures the quality or attractiveness of the business environment in the 82 countries covered by The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Country Forecast reports. It examines ten separate criteria or categories, covering the political environment, the macroeconomic environment, market opportunities, policy towards free enterprise and competition, policy towards foreign investment, foreign trade and exchange controls, taxes, financing, the labour market and infrastructure.

Score:
8.16
World Rank:
10/82

Source: The Economist - Business Environment Rankings 2014-2018

 

Country Risk

See the country risk analysis provided by Coface.

 

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Foreign Trade in Figures

Historically a nation of traders, Denmark's economy is extremely open to the outside. Trade represents nearly 100% of the GDP. 

The trade balance is structurally positive. Due to the resumption of exports and the downward trend in imports, the trade surplus increased in 2013, a trend which should continue in 2014.

Denmark's main trade partners are Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands, UK, USA and China.

 
Foreign Trade Indicators 20092010201120122013
Imports of Goods (million USD) 82,65084,87895,66391,92597,215
Exports of Goods (million USD) 93,91697,393111,864105,594111,297
Imports of Services (million USD) 49,59452,16958,45158,06259,829
Exports of Services (million USD) 54,17060,89466,07165,71069,481
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) -12.40.97.10.91.5
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) -9.51.97.30.10.8
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 42.443.647.448.648.5
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 46.749.752.954.054.3
Trade Balance (million USD) 8,9829,12510,1438,5028,839
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD) 12,88718,02617,99516,32219,575
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 89.193.3100.3102.6102.8

Source: WTO - World Trade Organization ; World Bank , Last Available Data

 

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
2013
Germany 15.3%
Sweden 11.7%
United Kingdom 8.1%
Norway 6.7%
United States 5.2%
See More Countries 53.0%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
2013
Germany 20.5%
Sweden 12.3%
Netherlands 7.4%
China 6.7%
Norway 5.8%
See More Countries 47.3%

Source: Comtrade, Last Available Data

 
 

Main Products

- bn USD of products exported in 2013
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 4.5%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude 4.5%
Meat of swine, fresh, chilled or frozenMeat of swine, fresh, chilled or frozen 3.1%
Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed...Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed products for therapeutic or prophylactic uses, put up in measured doses incl. those in the form of transdermal administration or in forms or packings for retail sale (excl. goods of heading 3002, 3005 or 3006) 2.9%
Electric generating sets and rotary convertersElectric generating sets and rotary converters 2.6%
See More Products 82.4%
- bn USD of products imported in 2013
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 6.9%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude 3.7%
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally...Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702) 3.2%
Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed...Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed products for therapeutic or prophylactic uses, put up in measured doses incl. those in the form of transdermal administration or in forms or packings for retail sale (excl. goods of heading 3002, 3005 or 3006) 2.9%
Automatic data processing machines and units...Automatic data processing machines and units thereof; magnetic or optical readers, machines for transcribing data onto data media in coded form and machines for processing such data, n.e.s. 2.4%
See More Products 81.0%

Source: Comtrade, Last Available Data

 
See More Products
More imports (Intracen Data)
More exports (Intracen Data)
 
 
 

Main Services

- bn USD of services exported in 2011
60.28%
18.05%
9.87%
3.94%
2.81%
1.24%
1.08%
0.96%
0.85%
0.51%
0.40%
- bn USD of services imported in 2011
52.22%
17.70%
16.58%
3.64%
3.11%
1.75%
1.47%
1.40%
1.00%
0.61%
0.52%

Source: Comtrade, Last Available Data

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Sources of General Economic Information

Ministries
Ministry of Economic and Business Affairs
Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries
Statistical Office
Statistics Denmark
Central Bank
Danish National Bank
Stock Exchange
Copenhagen Stock Exchange
Search Engines
Altavista.dk
Excite
Jubii
Yahoo!
Economic Portals
The Economist

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Political Outline

Executive Power
The Monarch is the head of the state and theoretically holds all executive powers. But in reality the executive powers are exercised on behalf of the monarch by the Prime Minister.
Legislative Power
Following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed Prime Minister by the monarch for a four-year term. The cabinet, called Council of State, is appointed by the Monarch on Prime Minister's recommendation. 
The legislature is unicameral. The parliament called People's Assembly has the ultimate legislative authority; its members are elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation to serve four-year terms. On a vote of no confidence motion the parliament may force the entire government to resign.
Main Political Parties
Denmark has a multi-party system, with the following four parties as major political parties:
- Liberal Party – a social liberal party, advocates major reforms in country's education & tax systems;
- Social Democratic Party – follows social-democratic ideology, supports public spending on healthcare, education and infrastructure;
- Conservative People's Party – a conservative centre-right political party;
- SF (Socialist People's Party) – follows popular-socialism inspired by socialism and green politics.
Current Political Leaders
Monarch: Queen Margrethe II (since January 1972); heir apparent Crown Prince FREDERIK
Prime Minister: Helle THORNING-SCHMIDT since 3 October 2011  – Socialdemokraterne (Social Democrats).
Next Election Dates
Parliamentary: September, 2015.
 

Indicator of Freedom of the Press

Definition:

The world rankings, published annually, measures the violations of press freedom worldwide. It reflects the degree of freedom enjoyed by journalists, the media and digital citizens of each country and the means used by states to respect and uphold this freedom. Finally, a note and a position are assigned to each country. To compile this index, Reporters Without Borders (RWB) prepared a questionnaire sent to partner organizations,150 RWB correspondents, journalists, researchers, jurists and activists of human rights, including the main criteria - 44 in total - to assess the situation of press freedom in a given country. It includes every kind of direct attacks against journalists and digital citizens (murders, imprisonment, assault, threats, etc.) or against the media (censorship, confiscation, searches and harassment etc.).

World Rank:
7/180
Evolution:
1 place down compared to 2013

Source: Worldwide Press Freedom Index 2014, Reporters Without Borders

 

Indicator of Political Freedom

Definition:

The Indicator of Political Freedom provides an annual evaluation of the state of freedom in a country as experienced by individuals. The survey measures freedom according to two broad categories: political rights and civil liberties. The ratings process is based on a checklist of 10 political rights questions (on Electoral Process, Political Pluralism and Participation, Functioning of Government) and 15 civil liberties questions (on Freedom of Expression, Belief, Associational and Organizational Rights, Rule of Law, Personal Autonomy and Individual Rights). Scores are awarded to each of these questions on a scale of 0 to 4, where a score of 0 represents the smallest degree and 4 the greatest degree of rights or liberties present. The total score awarded to the political rights and civil liberties checklist determines the political rights and civil liberties rating. Each rating of 1 through 7, with 1 representing the highest and 7 the lowest level of freedom, corresponds to a range of total scores.

Ranking:
Free
Political Freedom:
1/7

Map of freedom 2014
Source: Freedom House

 

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Last Updates: January 2015