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Denmark goes to polls on sustained growth

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Denmark goes to polls on sustained growth
Thorning-Schmidt is hoping to ride the improving economy to victory. Photo: Jens Nørgaard Larsen/Scanpix
10:56 CEST+02:00
Positive economy figures released on Friday are likely to give Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt a boost as she aims for re-election.
Denmark registered its seventh straight quarter of growth in January-March, rising by 0.4 percent from the previous three-month period, data showed Friday just three weeks ahead of a general election.
 
This is the first time the Scandinavian country has enjoyed such a long period of growth since 2000.
 
Earlier this week, Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt called legislative elections for June 18 even though her Social Democratic-led government is trailing the right-wing opposition in the polls.
 
 
Under election regulations she had to hold a vote by September 14, and she is believed to have wanted to take advantage of Denmark's strong economic showing.
 
The country's gross domestic product (GDP) reached its highest level in terms of volume since 2008, Friday's figures showed.
 
Household consumption rose by 0.7 percent from the previous quarter, boosted by rising optimism about the labour market.
 
Exports climbed 2.0 percent, bolstered by the weakening currency, the krone.
 
"There was a strong increase in the exports of goods, while there was a decline in both the export and import of services," Statistics Denmark said.
 
On the other hand, there was a 2.6 percent drop in investments in the quarter, primarily in the construction sector, though investments remain up year-on-year.
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