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Denmark’s 'one billion kroner' border control is value for money: Støjberg

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Denmark’s 'one billion kroner' border control is value for money: Støjberg
Photo: Claus Fisker / Ritzau Scanpix
10:36 CEST+02:00
The cost of implementing spot checks on Denmark’s borders is three times more than previously stated by the National Police, according to a report. Immigration minister Inger Støjberg said the money was well spent.

Public service’s broadcaster DR’s programme Detektor has revealed that border control costs have reached over one billion kroner – three times the amount previously stated by the National Police (Rigspolitiet).

The figure comes in part from data sent by the National Police to Detektor.

Police costs for the period 2016-2018 were 889 million kroner, DR writes.

Until the new figures emerged, the official amount spent on border control from January 4th, 2016 until December 31st, 2018 was 275 million kroner.

But that number does not take into account spending on the significant Home Guard (Hjemmeværnet) and Army contributions to the border checks, or for spending on the salaries of police officers manning the border.

In the new calculation, the National Police took into account extra wages paid to officers while they were on duty at the border.

As such, the police spent 418 million kroner in 2016, around 360 million kroner in 2017 and 166 million kroner in 2018 on border control, totalling 944 million kroner.

Money spent by the armed forces on border control is not included in the 944 million kroner-figure.

According to an email sent by the Ministry of Defence to Detektor, the Home Guard spent over 160 million kroner and the Army at least 37 million kroner on border control during the period.

That brings the overall spending to 1,091 million kroner, DR writes.

The National Police wrote to Detektor that border control had not resulted directly in extra spending on wages, because funding was “released through re-prioritization of resources from other police areas and from resources allocated to the strengthened presence in border areas in the multi-year police agreement from 2016-19”.

Minister for Immigration and Integration Inger Støjberg told Ritzau she was unsurprised by the figures and called the costs “worth every krone”.

“In that period, over 7,000 people have been refused entry and not allowed to travel into the country. Over 800 weapons have been confiscated, and a terrorist has been captured who was recently sentenced for his plans to commit terror in Copenhagen,” Støjberg said, in reference to the recent conviction on terrorism charges of a Syrian national whose accomplice was stopped at the border in Rødby.

She added that the cost of border control would pay for itself in the long term.

“In 2019, we will save four billion kroner on immigration, and that is partly because of border control, because fewer people are coming here,” she said.

Temporary border control arrangements are currently scheduled to expire on November 12th this year.

READ ALSO: Danish border control clash: 'Should Danes wait in kilometre-long queues to go on holiday?'

 
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