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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Denmark wins in the 'world cup for chefs,' armed forces unions distance themselves from plan to scrap Great Prayer Day and other news stories in Denmark on Tuesday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday
Danish chef Brian Mark Hansen and his team celebrate their win at the Bocuse d'Or, the 'world cup' for chefs. Photo: Jeff Pachoud/AFP/Ritzau Scanpix

Denmark wins ‘world cup’ for chefs 

It’s another proud day for high cuisine in Denmark after chef Brian Mark Hansen won the Bocuse d’Or, the unofficial ‘World Cup’ for the culinary world held every two years. 

Hansen, head chef at the Michelin-starred Søllerød Kro in Copenhagen, unseated defending champion and host France with his take on squash and monkfish. 

Competitors train for the Bocuse d’Or “a bit like a fighter pilot or a Formula 1 driver,” Davy Tissot, 2022’s victor and president of this year’s jury, tells the Agence France-Presse. 

“Finland’s 25-year-old candidate Johan Kurkela has been known to train for
10 hours straight locked in a basement. Meanwhile, [the French competitor Nais] Pirollet trained daily for five-and-a-half hours nonstop to replicate competition conditions,” the AFP writes. 

READ MORE: World-famous Copenhagen restaurant to close after 2024

Don’t blame us: unions for Danish armed forces distance themselves from Great Prayer Day debate 

Unions for the Danish armed forces want politicians to stop pinning the end of Great Prayer Day, a public holiday set to be axed by the government, on them. 

Three unions, representing a total of more than 18,000 members in the armed forces, say association with the loss of a public holiday could undermine general support for the armed forces. 

Although the armed forces have needed the extra funds for years, Niels Tønning, chairman of the union Hovedorganisationen af Officerer i Danmark (“First Organization of Officers in Denmark”) told newspaper BT that it shouldn’t come at the expense of the freedom of Danish wage earners.

READ ALSO: Why does Denmark have an annual ‘Prayer Day’ holiday?

Fatal workplace accidents in Denmark rising 

Denmark broke a bleak record in 2022 — the highest number of fatal workplace accidents in more than ten years, according to news outlet Zetland. 

Last year, 42 people died in Denmark due to accidents at their job, the Danish Working Environment Authority said. 

The construction industry was particularly perilous, tallying 6,219 serious accidents. The DWEA found safety violations in each case, Zetland reports. 

Construction has surged in recent years, “and the easiest way to improve efficiency, the builders obviously believe, is to relax a little on security,” Flemming Hansen, chief consultant for construction for trade union 3F, told the media.  

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Copenhagen to trial four-day work week, Danske Bank loss after US fines, Copenhagen to offer physiotherapy without referral, and a new sleeper from Copenhagen to Berlin. Here's the day's news from Denmark.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Copenhagen city government to trial four-day work week 

Copenhagen’s city government have voted to trial a four-day week for certain employees from the start of 2024, TV2 has reported

This means that several divisions in the city’s offices will be able to have a shorter work week. Copenhagen’s city government is Denmark’s biggest employer with 45,000 employees. 

“We know that there is a relatively big stress crisis in Denmark and that one of the remedies is to have shorter working and more flexible working times,” said Troels Christian Jakobsen from The Alternative, who proposed the trial.  

Danish vocab: et redskab – a remedy/tool

Danish bank posts loss after US money laundering fine

Danske Bank reported heavy losses for 2022 on Thursday as Denmark’s biggest lender was hit by huge fines in the United States and at home over money laundering.

The bank posted a loss of 5.1 billion Danish kroner ($753 billion) last year.

But it expects to bounce back into the green in 2023 as it forecast a net profit in the range of 15-17 billion kroner for the year.

The bank said 2022 was “an unusual year” with market volatility, soaring inflation following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and a “deteriorating macroeconomic outlook”.

Danske Bank also set aside nearly 1.8 billion euros in provisions for legal cases related to a money laundering scandal involving its branch in Estonia.

Danish region wants health service physiotherapy without a referral from doctor

Greater Copenhagen says it wants to extend nationally a scheme allowing patients to access physiotherapy through the public health system without a doctor’s referral.

Under current rules, referral from a doctor covers around 40 percent of the cost of physiotherapy treatment.

Patients can go directly to physiotherapists without a doctors’ referral if they pay the full cost of treatment.

The proposed scheme would see physiotherapists make the decision as to whether the patient qualifies for the subsidy.

A trial project in two municipalities in the region, Ballerup and Frederikssund, proved popular with patients and doctors.

Danish vocab: lægehenvisning – a doctor’s referral

New rail service planned through Norway, Sweden and Denmark to Hamburg

Plans for a new rail service running from Oslo and stopping in Gothenburg, Malmö and Copenhagen before arriving in Hamburg are in the works, Swedish state-owned rail operator SJ has said.

Sweden’s state-owned SJ, along with Denmark’s DSB and DB of Germany, plans to offer a new international train line which runs between the Norwegian capital Oslo and Hamburg in northern Germany.

The planned route would run daily, departing from Oslo at 8am before making stops in Gothenburg, Malmö and Copenhagen and arriving in Hamburg at 7pm. A service departing Hamburg and terminating in Gothenburg is also planned.

The 11 hour service would be quicker than the equivalent journey using either a car and ferry connection or existing train services.

The planned service will enter into operation in 2027. Petter Essén, head of SJ’s vehicle and traffic programme, said the route made sense as it would connect a long stretch which doesn’t have continuous train traffic.

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