Over 3,000 Ukrainian refugees in Denmark have returned home

Some 4,600 of the 31,000 refugees who fled to Denmark from Ukraine last year have since left the Nordic country.

Over 3,000 Ukrainian refugees in Denmark have returned home
The Ukrainian flag flying in Copenhagen, March 2022. Over 3,000 refugees from Ukraine who came to Denmark last year have since returned. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

Of the 4,600 Ukrainians who left Denmark, 3,300 returned to Ukraine according to Statistics Denmark figures.

That number includes 1,500 women, 1,400 children and 370 men.

The statistics show that Ukrainian arrivals in Denmark peaked in the second quarter of 2022 following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“Immigration of Ukrainian nationals increased markedly in 2022. In comparison 1,900 Ukrainian nationals immigrated to Denmark in 2021,” said Statistics Denmark special consultant Lisbeth Harbo.

“The large immigration in 2022 should of course be seen in light of the Russian invasion of Ukraine,” Harbo said.

Women and children comprised 85 percent of all Ukrainian immigrants to Denmark in 2022.

That was primarily because adult men were generally required to stay in Ukraine and fight against the invasion.

The Danish statistics also show that every one of the country’s 98 municipalities received refugees from Ukraine last year.

Most were given addresses in major cities Copenhagen or Aarhus, where 9 percent and 5 percent respectively were housed.

Two other cities, Aalborg and Odense, received the next highest proportions with 4 percent and 3 percent respectively.

Denmark passed a special ‘Ukrainian law’ last spring enabling refugees from Ukraine to be quickly given temporary work and residence permits.

Recently released figures from the Ministry of Employment show that just over 7,000 Ukrainians are currently working in Denmark. That corresponds to approximately 56 percent of Ukrainian refugees who are available to the labour market.

Sectors including cleaning, hotels and hospitality and agriculture are among those to have hired the most Ukrainians.

“I think that these are excellent numbers. They show that many people, despite the difficult circumstances, wanted to find work and provide for themselves while they are in Denmark,” Employment Minister Ane Halsboe-Jørgensen told news wire Ritzau in relation to the employment figures.

READ ALSO: ‘One in three’ Ukrainian refugees in Denmark wants to stay after war

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‘One in two’ tax inspections found social dumping at Danish companies

Visits by inspectors uncovered the practice of social dumping at over half of companies checked in Denmark last year, the Ministry of Tax said on Friday.

'One in two' tax inspections found social dumping at Danish companies

Inspections in 2022 at workplaces including restaurants, construction sites and agricultural and cleaning businesses turned up a large number of cases of social dumping.

Some 3,343 inspections were conducted during the year, scrutinising working environments and tax payments along with staff work and residence permits, the Danish Tax Agency (Skattestyrelsen) said.

Social dumping is defined by the EU as the practice whereby “workers are given pay and/or working and living conditions which are sub-standard compared to those specified by law or collective agreements in the relevant labour market, or otherwise prevalent there.”

This means that, in cases where the Danish authorities detected social dumping, foreign staff were working under poorer conditions than the law or relevant collective bargaining agreement provides for Danish nationals. This saves employers money because the labour costs them less.

The Tax Agency is responsible for checking Danish tax rules are properly complied with. As such, the checks by the Tax Agency checked tax aspects of potential social dumping breaches, with other authorities responsible for other areas.

The Tax Agency can detect social dumping by, for example, checking the amount of income tax or VAT (moms in Danish) paid at a company.

Companies were asked to regulate their tax payments at more than one in two inspections in 2022, according to the tax ministry.

“The new report from the Tax Agency clearly shows that there is an issue here and that the joint efforts from authorities are paying off,” Tax Minister Jeppe Bruus said in the statement.

Some 1.9 billion kroner has been raised by the state in tax demands made as a result of social dumping inspections since 2015.

Last year’s inspections enabled tax authorities to demand 317 million kroner, the highest figure since structured control of social dumping began in 2012. The prior year, 2021, saw demands for 311 million kroner issued as a result of the inspections.

“It’s crucial for the economy and cohesion in society that there is respect for the playing rules of the Danish labour market,” Bruus said.