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Election: PM hands out DKK 39bn in welfare goodies

DANISH NEWS - Ahead of an expected election announcement, Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt curries favour with voters

Helle Thorning-Schmidt has promised a further DKK 39bn to be spent on health, care for the elderly, and education ahead of 2020. This is according to, and other media.

At a press conference to announce the government’s latest initiative, entitled “Denmark is on the right road – plans for a stronger society’, the PM emphasized that the country is emerging from the crisis after some very tough years.

“It needed hard work and it’s now that we need to stand firm,” she told the press. “This is a government determined to create both jobs, but still wants to provide better welfare for all.”

No more tightening of belts

She said the economy will continue to improve over the next few years but the public sector won’t be allowed to stagnate while the rest of society becomes more prosperous. The DKK 39 bn, to be funded by planned private spending growth of 0.6 pct. annually, will be split into four ‘boxes’ – DKK 15bn on healthcare and the elderly, DKK 15bn to help the socially vulnerable, DKK 5bn for children, education, and social mobility, and the remainding DKK 4bn to green conversion and growth.

She was backed by business Minister Morten Østergaard, who said the government’s political decisions and reforms so far have created a framework for more public spending. He said:

“It isn’t a question of tightening our belts – we’ve already done that so we can now afford to spend a little more.”

With a nod to the upcoming election, the PM dismissed the Liberals’ plan for zero public sector growth, which she claimed would lead to major cutbacks in welfare.

Read article (in Danish) here.

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