Danish government agrees inflation package for vulnerable families

The government has agreed with three opposition parties on a package providing financial help to 40,500 young families in Denmark.

Danish government agrees inflation package for vulnerable families
Danish employment minister Ane Halsboe-Jørgensen presents the new agreement for financial aid for low income families. Photo: Emil Helms/Ritzau Scanpix

Spending of 300 million kroner will provide for cash payouts to vulnerable families who are struggling to cover costs as a result of inflation, the employment ministry announced late on Thursday.

Three left wing parties: the Socialist People’s Party (SF), Alternative and Social Liberals, have joined the coalition government in agreeing on the package.

A recent winter inflation spending plan designated the 300 million kroner amount for the purpose of assisting families. Thursday’s deal sets out how that money will be allocated.

It replaces a previous subsidy for families with children, known as børnetilskud, which expires on March 1st.

READ ALSO: Danish government announces winter inflation help

Although it replaces the earlier scheme, criteria for its distribution are changed although families who received the old subsidy will also qualify for the new one, the government said.

Families who receive the cash benefit are families in which one or both parents received benefits via the basic system of unemployment benefit, kontanthjælp, in January. Alternatively, parents who were under the connected return-to-work benefit ressourceforløbsydelse in January can also qualify.

The money will be paid out in two instalments, the first by the end of June and the second in August.

The amount each family receives is determined by the number of children in each family. Families with one children will receive 7,500 kroner, families with two children receive 11,250 kroner, and families with three children will receive 13,500 kroner.

The amount is tax free and does not count towards the overall benefit total received by the parents. It is a one-off scheme and as such will not be repeated in 2024.

“What we are doing with this agreement is ensuring the poorest families get help with inflation. This is the same group [that received the previous subsidy, ed.] and we have added more, so we will reach 65,000 children,” Employment Minister Ane Halsboe-Jørgensen said.

SF’s employment spokesperson Karsten Hønge said at the same briefing that SF was unhappy to see the previous arrangement discontinued because it provided for financial help to vulnerable families each year for as long as it was extended.

The party will therefore be “right behind this government to make sure this money is there next year. Because these families can’t do without this money, inflation or not,” he said.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members


KEY POINTS: What is in Denmark’s 2023 budget proposal?

Denmark’s coalition government presented on Thursday a new budget proposal in which it said it was “stepping on the brakes” on state spending.

KEY POINTS: What is in Denmark’s 2023 budget proposal?

Danish budgets are usually tabled and eventually adopted during the autumn, but last year’s election disrupted the normal timetable.

The proposed budget, given the title “A Responsible Way Forward” (En ansvarlig vej frem) was presented by ministers from the three coalition parties on Thursday: Finance Minister Nicolai Wammen, acting Defence Minister Troels Lund Poulsen and Culture Minister Jakob Engel-Schmidt.

A cautious economic approach to spending is needed given global circumstances including the war in Ukraine, inflation and last year’s energy crisis, Wammen said.

“Even though a lot of things look good when we look at the Danish economy, that doesn’t change where we are. Uncertain times,” he said.

Engel-Schmidt added that some might describe the proposed budget as “boring”, given that it “doesn’t bring a shower of presents”.

Key points from the proposed budget are outlined below. The proposal will go into negotiations with other parties in parliament before being voted through in its final form.

Inflation assistance to lower income groups 

Last year saw the highest inflation rate for 40 years in Denmark, and the effects will still be felt in 2023 even if the inflation percentages themselves are less severe.

Although the government wants to “step on the brakes”, it has still set aside 2.4 billion kroner for financial assistance to people vulnerable to rising prices.

Some 1.1 billion kroner will be spent on 5,000 kroner “cheques” for elderly persons who receive social welfare. People who have high medicine costs and students who receive subsidies because they must provide for others, such as single parents (SU-forsørgertillæg) are also among groups to be assisted with the inflation spending.

READ ALSO: Danish government agrees inflation package for vulnerable families 

‘Acute plan’ for hospitals

An agreement with regional health authorities on an “acute” spending plan to address the most serious challenges faced by the health services has already been agreed, providing 2 billion kroner by the end of 2024.

The agreement was announced by the government along with regional and municipal officials in February.

READ ALSO: What exactly is wrong with the Danish health system?

‘Lower than ever’ reserve fund

A so-called “negotiation reserve” (forhandlingsreserve), a pool of money in the budget that can be allocated at a later date based on agreements between parties, has been significantly cut to 200 million kroner.

A 2023 budget proposal from August last year, which was not adopted due to the election, had the fund at 600 million kroner. The reserve has been as high as 1.5 billion kroner in the past, according to broadcaster DR’s report on Thursday’s proposal.

The previous, single-party Social Democratic government was reported to favour mental health services and the elderly as areas which could benefit from the fund in 2023.

The lower amount is partly due to the shorter timescale of this year’s budget. The 2024 budget will be proposed and passed in late 2023 under the regular timetable.

“There are still things we can prioritise but we are asking you to take responsibility to get Denmark through when inflation is still a major challenge,” Wammen said.

Spending on courts system

Some 32.2 million kroner has been put aside to specifically targeting a reduction in waiting times for court dates, DR writes. The money is part of a larger amount, 185 million kroner, to be spent on the courts.

Denmark’s courts system has in recent years seen a rising number of criminal cases and growing processing times for cases.

Broadband internet to get boost in rural spending

The “broadband fund” or bredbåndspulje will get an additional 100 million kroner to improve coverage in areas that still have patchy connection.

Another 100 million kroner will go into the landsbypulje or “Village Fund”, giving rural municipalities funding for demolition or renovation of deteriorated buildings.


A majority in parliament has already voted in favour of a seven-billion kroner fund in 2023 to help Ukraine defend itself against the Russian invasion.

The fund,will be spent on Danish military, civilian and commercial assistance to Ukraine.

Part of the spending is funded by Denmark’s international development budget, while over 5 billion comes from spending an increased portion of the national GDP on the 2023 budget.

READ ALSO: Denmark announces seven-billion kroner Ukraine fund