Today in Denmark: A round-up of the news on Wednesday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Denmark: A round-up of the news on Wednesday
The Great Belt Bridge saw record traffic in July. Photo: Daniel Villadsen/Visit Denmark

Denmark buys 280,000 doses of new coronavirus vaccine

Denmark has bought 280,000 doses of the new Novavax vaccine for 37 million Danish kronor, the country’s health ministry has said in a press release

The purchase is part of a deal struck by the European Commission on behalf of the member states to buy up to 20m doses of the vaccine, which has yet to be approved by the European Medicines Agency. 

“Even though the vaccine rollout in Denmark is now going really well, it is important that we continue to follow the development of new vaccines closely,” the country’s health minister, Magnus Heunicke, said. “In the long run there may be a need to include other vaccine technologies besides those on which Pfizer and Moderna are based.” 

Meeting with regions brings no progress on nurses pay conflict 

A meeting between the Danish Nurses’ Council (DSR) and the Danish Regions, which represents the five regional health authorities, on Wednesday morning brought no progress towards ending the strike. 

“It was clear at the meeting that both parties have a really hard time seeing a negotiated solution,” Grete Christensen, chair of DSR said. “We need to find a solution. The health service demands it, because the conflict has major consequences for patients and citizens.” 

Anders Kühnau, the Danish Regions’ chief negotiator said that “unfortunately we didn’t get what we were hoping for” at the meeting. 

The nurses have been on strike for eight weeks over pay. With the number striking, which started at 5,000 set to increase to 6,500 on September 7th. 

Danish wind giant Vestas downgrades expectations for 2021

Denmark has downgraded its profit and revenue expectations for this year, citing “supply chain constraints, cost inflation, and restrictions in key markets caused by Covid-19″.

The company now expects revenues of €15.5-16.5bn, rather than €16-17bn), and its profit margin to drop to to 5-7 percent from 6-8 percent, it said in its report on the three months leading up to the end of June. 

Denmark sees infections hit highest rate for one and a half weeks 

Denmark registered 1,004 new coronavirus infections in the 24 hours leading up to 2pm on Tuesday, the highest daily rate in one and a half weeks. The western suburbs of Copenhagen — Brøndby, Ishøj, Hvidovre, Albertslund and Rødovre — is currently the most badly affected area. 

Over 60 percent of Danish citizens are now fully vaccinated, equivalent to over 3m people. 

Meanwhile, the so-called reproduction number, has been estimated at 1 for the third week in a row. This means that every ten people who get infected in turn go on to infect ten more, meaning the level of infection in society is neither growing nor declining.

“This points to a stable epidemic, which those many Danes who are now vaccinated are keeping down,” Denmark’s health minister, Magnus Heunicke, wrote on Twitter. 

Record traffic on Great Belt Fixed Link

A record 1.3m cars crossed the Great Belt Fixed Link between the islands of Zealand and Funen in July, as Danes continue to holiday at home, with Copenhageners driving to the beaches of northern and Western Jutland rather than flying overseas. 

Saturday, July 31st was the busiest day, with 56, 291 cars crossing the bridge.

Denmark to force social media giants to delete illegal pics within 24 hours

Under a planed new Danish law, social media giants such as Facebook, Snapchat and YouTube will be required to remove illegal content such as child pornography, revenge pornography, and images of or incitements to carry out terrorist acts, or face heavy fines. 

“We have seen far too many examples of young girls or ordinary citizens who experience that illegal content is shared of them on social media, where no one takes responsibility for having it removed,” Minister of Trade and Industry Simon Kollerup (S) told state broadcaster DR. “This is not how it should be in Denmark. That is why we must have a law that now ensures that we as a society take responsibility when the tech giants do not,” 

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

A rare day of sunshine, a major fire in Copenhagen, and energy companies forced to 'give back' a billion kroner are among the top news stories in Denmark on Friday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Sunshine ahead 

Denmark can look forward to a rare day of winter sun on Friday, according to the latest from the Danish Meteorological Institute. 

DMI meteorologist Klaus Larsen says temperatures will hover above freezing and the wind will be manageable today as the clouds part. 

It will be a brief reprieve, however — the clouds will return promptly for the weekend. Take an hour to sit yourself outside like a potted plant. 

READ ALSO: Why Denmark’s extra grey January can cause winter blues, and what might help

Massive fire in west Copenhagen due to possible explosion 

A “major” fire on Damhus Boulevard took 21 vehicles and 49 firefighters to subdue, according to tweets from the Greater Copenhagen Fire Department. 

The fire broke out in an occupied building currently undergoing renovation, the Fire Department says. A news outlet that was on the scene while the fire was still active reports the emergency began with an explosion, which appears to be corroborated by images of the scene that show debris scattered well away from the building. 

Mads Dam of the Western Copenhagen police told news agency Ritzau that he couldn’t provide any information about the cause of the fire. “It all needs to cool down before our technicians can come in and examine it,” Dam said. 

Tax minister: energy companies owe Danes a billion kroner 

Energy companies will have to fork over 1.2 billion kroner of the last year’s windfall to the Danish treasury, tax minister Jeppe Bruus told business news outlet Finans. 

“We will return that money to consumers in the forthcoming negotiations on inflation relief,” Bruus said. He added that the 1.2 billion kroner sum is a fraction of what was expected to be recovered, which had been estimated at more than 10 billion. 

In September, European Commission announced plans to cap to energy company profits as well as levy collections from fossil energy companies to the tune of 140 billion euros, news agency Ritzau reports. 

READ ALSO: How much will energy cost in 2023 in Denmark compared to 2022?