Economy of Denmark
Denmark has a diverse, mixed economy. It relies heavily on human resources, but not exclusively, as there are a few significant and valuable natural resources available, including mature oil and gas wells in the North Sea. Cooperatives form a large part of some sectors, be it in housing, agriculture or retail. Foundations play a large role as owners of private sector companies. Denmark's nominal GDP was estimated to be $333 billion, the 32nd largest in the world. It has the world's lowest level of income inequality, according to the World Bank Gini (%), but no legally stipulated minimum wage. As of January 2015 the unemployment rate is at 6.2%, which is below the Euro Area average of 11.2%. As of 28 February 2014 Denmark is among the countries with the highest credit rating.
Denmark's main exports are: industrial production/manufactured goods 73.3% (of which machinery and instruments were 21.4%, and fuels, chemicals, etc. 26%); agricultural products and others for consumption 18.7% (in 2009 meat and meat products were 5.5% of total export; fish and fish products 2.9%). Denmark is a net exporter of food and energy and has since the 1990s had a balance of payments surplus. The accumulated value of service and merchandise exports in 2013 amounted to 54% of GDP, and imports in 2013 amounted to 49% of GDP. Notable among the service exports are container shipping. Denmark produces oil, natural gas, wind- and bio-energy. Its principal exports are machinery, instruments and food products. The US is Denmark's largest non-European trading partner, accounting for around 5% of total Danish merchandise trade. Aircraft, computers, machinery, and instruments are among the major US exports to Denmark. Among major Danish exports to the U.S. are industrial machinery, chemical products, furniture, pharmaceuticals, Lego and canned ham and pork.
Denmark is home to various types of agricultural production. Within animal husbandry, it includes dairy and beef cattle, pigs, poultry and fur animals - primarily mink, all sectors with a major export. Regarding vegetable production, Denmark is a leading producer of grass-, clover- and horticultural seeds.
The value of Danish agricultural export, including the agribusiness sector, has risen steadily in recent years and accounted for 16 billion Euros in 2011. The agriculture and food sector as a whole represents 20 per cent of total Danish commodity exports.
Two hundred professional producers are responsible for the Danish egg production, which was 66 million kg in 2011. Chickens for slaughter are often produced in units with 40,000 broilers. In 2012, 100 million chickens were slaughtered. In the minor productions of poultry, 13 million ducks, 1.4 million geese and 5.0 million turkeys were slaughtered in 2012.
Organic farming and production has increased dramatically in Denmark in the last 25 years and continues to expand with more than a quadrupling of exports since 2006. In 2012 the export of organic products reached DK 1.2 billion, a 12.3% increase from 2011.In this respect it is the official goal of the government to double the area used for organic farming in the country from 2011 to 2020.
Tourism is a major economical and job contributor in Denmark and it constitutes a growth sector.
Denmark is in a strong position in terms of integrating fluctuating and unpredictable energy sources such as wind power in the grid. It is this knowledge that Denmark now aims to exploit in the transport sector by focusing on intelligent battery systems (V2G) and plug-in vehicles.
Denmark has changed its energy consumption from 99% fossil fuels (92% oil (all imported) and 7% coal) and 1% biofuels in 1972 to 73% fossil fuels (37% oil (all domestic), 18% coal and 18% natural gas (all domestic)) and 27% renewables (largely biofuels) in 2015. The goal is a full independence of fossil fuels by 2050.
Oil and Natural Gas
Denmark has considerable sources of oil and natural gas in the North Sea and ranks as number 32 in the world among net exporters of crude oil. Esbjerg is Denmark's main city for the oil and gas industry, this is because of its ideal location close to the North Sea, which is where most of Denmark's oil and gas deposits are found.
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