Christmas is time to give, and since 2004, Denmark has taken this message very seriously. When a violent earthquake caused a tsunami that cost 220,000 lives, Denmark was unfortunately unable to help, after emptying its coffers for the year.
Since then, the Tsunami Reserve has been set aside annually to provide relief in the event of a festive tragedy – a pot of money that this year amounted to 105 million kroner.
When the disaster fortunately does not hit, this money is distributed to humanitarian crises around the world.
Relieve the suffering of millions
“There must be no doubt that Denmark must always be ready to help if disaster strikes. Even when it is the end of the year, as we saw in 2004, ”explained Minister of Development Flemming Møller Mortensen.
This year, DKK 70 million was sent for lack of unexpected disasters to support humanitarian efforts in Afghanistan and Yemen. The remaining 35 million was donated to the UN Central Relief Fund, which provides emergency assistance in areas most in need.
“The money here can make a big difference. This is especially true this year, when COVID-19 has exacerbated the challenges of the many humanitarian crises and thrown millions of people into very critical situations, ”Mortensen added.
In total, Danish humanitarian aid in 2020 amounted to DKK 2.85 billion.
‘Bookshop from Brønshøj’ has overturned the death sentence
In 2016, Said Mansour was deported from Denmark by the Supreme Court and his Danish citizenship was revoked. Known as ‘The bookseller from Brønshøj’, Mansour was wanted in Morocco, where he was accused of having played a role in the terrorist attack in Casablanca, which cost 45 lives in 2003. Early last year he was sentenced to death, but this is a decision that (as expected) was toppled before the end of the year.
Travel across the Sound becomes greener
Since the end of last year, all trains running over the Øresund Bridge are now increasingly powered by energy from renewable sources. Previously, trains had been powered by a so-called ‘energy mix’ of both renewable and non-renewable electricity, but new plans will see CO2 emissions from rail traffic at the connection reduced by 70 percent. Over 11 million single journeys across the bridge were made in 2019 along with 50,000 freight train tickets.
The Brexit agreement is bad news for Danish fishermen
Kenn Skau Fischer, CEO of the Danish Fisheries Association, has announced that the Brexit Deal was finally agreed at the end of last year, will cost jobs in Denmark. He believes that the price of access to British waters is too high, and that Danish fishermen as a result lose a quarter of the fishing quotas they had previously had in the waters.
Transport agreement concluded between the EU and the UK
On Christmas Eve, a Brexit agreement on transport was finally reached, providing full, liberalized access to international transport between the UK and EU countries. For air passengers, flights to and from the UK will continue with some operational flexibility agreed with regard to code sharing and aircraft leasing. The agreement entered into force early – on 31 December – to avoid difficulties when the United Kingdom left the EU the following day.
The Danes’ second best English-speaking person in the world
According to the latest figures, the Danes are the best non-native English speakers in the Nordic countries Education First ranking. Only the Dutch are better, with Finland, Sweden, Norway, Austria, Portugal, Germany, Belgium and Singapore completing the top ten. The rankings are rubbed regularly as they are based on responses from students learning English, not an assessment of the country’s versatile skills, although Denmark is delighted to have reached its neighbors after falling to fourth last year.
Source: The Nordic Page