Denmark allows some foreigners to work 'for short periods' without permits

The Local Denmark
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Denmark allows some foreigners to work 'for short periods' without permits
Employees from foreign subsidiaries of Danish companies -- such as this Novo Nordisk manufacturing plant in Ohio, will now be able to work in Denmark for short periods without a permit. Photo: Novo Nordisk

New rules came into force on Friday that allow foreigners working for subsidiaries of Danish companies to work in Denmark for short periods without a work or residency permit.


Under the exemption, foreign workers will be allowed to work in Denmark for two 15-day periods every six months, with a minimum 14-day gap between the two periods.  

To be eligible, foreign workers must be employed by a foreign branch or subsidiary of a company registered in Denmark, which has at least 50 employees.

The foreign worker must also be allowed to enter and reside in Denmark legally, either because they are a citizen of a visa-free company, or because they have been issued a visa to take advantage of the new rule.

Denmark's Foreign Minister, Lars Løkke Rasmussen, whose Moderate Party has been pushing for the exemption, said he was pleased it was now in place. 

"I am very happy that there will now be more flexibility for Danish companies to bring foreign employees to Denmark," he said in a press release. "It is a big priority for the government to help Danish companies create jobs and growth, and we have listened to the criticism that cumbersome processes for residence and work permits for foreign employees have long been a stumbling block." 


In the building and construction, agriculture, forestry and horticulture, cleaning, window cleaning, hotel and restaurant, and freight transport industries, the exemption is only available for medium and high-skill jobs.

"It simply does not work for Danish companies to face challenges getting employees from their foreign departments to come to Denmark, even just to participate in general group meetings," said Denmark's immigration and integration minister, Kaare Dybvad Bek, who represents the Social Democrats. 

"I believe that we have presented a balanced solution, where we meet the requirements business has for flexible rules at the same time that the rule is delimited in a way that it is not open to abuse." 

You can find a complete list of work permit exemptions here on the website of the The Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration. 


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