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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

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

A North American ring thrush, observed this week in Denmark for the first time ever.
A North American ring thrush, observed this week in Denmark for the first time ever.. Photo by Dietra Semple on Unsplash

Maersk to require office staff to be vaccinated against Covid-19 

Danish transport giant Maersk is to introduce a requirement for all its office staff to be vaccinated against Covid-19, newspaper Berlingske reports.

CEO Søren Schou told the newspaper that Maersk will introduce the requirement “within the next three months”.

The firm is the first major Danish company to apply such a rule relating to vaccination against the coronavirus, and will also apply it in some of its offices in other countries, but will exempt those where vaccine supply is short, according to the report.

Prime minister briefs press over mink SMS issue but opposition not happy

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen last night spoke to press over the issue of automatically deleted SMS messages related to last year’s decision to cull Denmark’s fur farm mink.

That decision is currently the subject of an official inquiry, which requested the SMS messages from the government only to find they had been deleted automatically after 30 days. It later emerged that some government ministries do not automatically delete their texts.


Automatic deletion of her texts was implemented sometime in summer 2020, Frederiksen said on Wednesday, but did not give more exact detail. That would place it several months before the mink decision was made.

“I understand it can look strange. But I want to make it absolutely clear that we had no wish to erase anything. I take responsibility for what we did,” Frederiksen said.

Conservative party leader Søren Pape Poulsen said the PM’s briefing “almost raises as many questions as it answers”.

We’ll have a full report on this on our website today.

Over one million passengers fly with Norwegian

Airline Norwegian, which was hit hard by thew Covid-19 pandemic and last year filed for bankruptcy protection in Norway, appears on the right track with 1.2 million passengers in October. That is 900,000 more than in October 2020 and the first seven-figure monthly total since the outbreak of the pandemic.

“We are very happy to see that an appetite for travel seems to be holding at a high level in the winter season,” CEO Geir Karlsen said in a statement.

The airline operates routes from Danish airports Copenhagen, Billund and Aalborg.

North American bird spotted in Denmark for first time

A North American hermit thrush was captured and set free again on Danish island Christiansø this week, the first time the species has been found in the country.

“This is an extremely rare bird so it’s a sensation in itself seen from the bird world,” Knud Flensted, biologist with the Danish Ornithological Society, told news wire Ritzau.

Relatively common in North America, the hermit thrush was last seen in Scandinavia in Sweden in 1988.

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Today in Denmark: a roundup of the news on Friday

Overnight outage for e-Boks system continues and kindergartens to be tested for PFAS are among the news in Denmark on Friday morning.

Today in Denmark: a roundup of the news on Friday

Denmark’s e-Boks digital mail system still down on Friday morning

People in Denmark were still unable to log in to the e-Boks system on Friday morning, more than 12 hours after problems began shortly before 7pm on Thursday evening. 

“We are currently experiencing problems logging into e-Boks both via app and web. We are working hard to resolve the problem and apologise for the inconvenience,” the system said on its website.

E-Boks allows Danish residents to receive digital mail from the government and other public sector organisations.

Danish vocabulary: vi beklager ulejligheden – we apologise for the inconvenience

Major spending plan to fight social dumping 

A majority of parties have agreed a 1.3 billion kroner spending plan that is designed to tackle social dumping and other problem areas at workplaces.

The deal, termed a “working environment agreement” (arbejdsmiljøaftale), specifies social dumping as a major area of focus.

“This is an agreement of historic level. I am happy that everyone is part of it,” employment minister Ane Halsboe-Jørgensen said following the conclusion of negotiations on Thursday.

Social dumping is the practice by which foreign workers are used to circumvent Danish collective bargaining agreements, saving employers money by hiring staff on wages and working conditions inferior to those set by the Danish labour model.

Some 673 million kroner of the total 1.3 billion are earmarked for prevention of social dumping.

“This is an anti social dumping effort that acts against labour crime and cheating the system. So that people who actually play by the rules get fair competition,” Halsboe-Jørgensen said.

Denmark to test 10 kindergartens and playgrounds for ‘forever chemical’ PFAS

Ten kindergartens and public playgrounds in the South Denmark region are to be tested for the pollutant chemical PFAS.

Five kindergartens and public playgrounds on Funen and five kindergartens and public playgrounds in Southern Jutland are to be tested for presence of the chemical, the South Denmark regional health authority said in a statement on Thursday.

The locations are to be tested because the authority does not know with certainty that they are not contaminated with PFAS, the health authority said.

“I want to stress that the Region does not expect in advance that PFAS chemicals will be found in the ground in amounts that can constitute a risk to children,” Poul Erik Jensen, head of the Region’s environment board, said in the statement.

Danish vocabulary: at understrege – to stress

Danish agency received 14 reports of drones after Nord Stream explosions

Denmark’s Energy Agency received 16 reports of drone and ship activity at energy facilities on or under the sea in the weeks after the sabotage of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines.

The information on the reports was revealed by newspaper Børsen based on an access to information request with the Energy Agency.

Drone sightings accounted for 14 of the 16 reports with the remaining two relating to ships. In the corresponding period in 2021, the agency received zero reports.

It is impossible to say whether the apparent spike in sightings represents increased activity or increased alert in the area, according to an expert.