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Danes don't like sale of energy utility DONG to Goldman Sachs

DANISH NEWS: A majority of the electorate is against the sale of a stake of state-owned energy company DONG to US investment bank Goldman Sachs

A new Wilke poll for Jyllands-Posten shows that nearly two thirds of all voters – 63.4% – believe it’s ‘important’ that DONG remains 100% Danish owned, reflecting the growing political criticism ahead of the decisive vote in parliament, Thursday. This is according to Seven59.dk and epn.dk.

Finance Minister Bjarne Corydon again rejected the criticism, noting that there are already two Danish pension companies involved in the deal and it would be a violation of the rules to demand that the total investment has to be Danish. He said:

“As a responsible minister the most important task facing me is to ensure that we find the best outcome for Danish taxpayers and Dong Energy, and that’s what I‘ve done. It’s also important to emphasize that the Danish state will still maintain its majority stake in Dong after the capital increase and two Danish pension funds, ATP and PFA, are also part of the investment group. Requiring all investors to be Danish isn’t a legitimate demand.”

No better deal

Danish People’s Party leader Kristian Thulesen Dahl, who intends to vote against the agreement tomorrow, said the new poll sends a very clear signal to the government that it doesn’t have the public’s support.

“We will fight until the last minute to increase public resistance so that the Social Democrats and Socialist People’s Party feel there’s no alternative but to back down,” he said. However, coalition partner, the Social Liberals, said they have no intention of bowing down to the criticism.

“The Finance Minister believes it’s the best possible offer and the best possible deal for DONG and we believe him. There hasn’t been a single alternative offer over the past year since the draft agreement was concluded so why should things be different today,” said a spokesman.

Article in Danish here.

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