Denmark - Country Commercial Guide
Market Overview
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Situated within the Nordic region, Denmark, like Finland, Norway, and Sweden, is an advanced, high-income, and highly connected country.  While each country has its own unique market and characteristics, there are certain synergies that tie together these highly innovative marketplaces.  With an aggregate GDP of USD 1.53 trillion and combined population just shy of 28 million people, the Nordics are of genuine interest to a number of U.S. companies with appropriate products, technologies, and services.

American-owned firms play an important role in Denmark.  The largest share of U.S. investments goes to the software, information, and communications sectors.  American firms are also notably present in business and financial services, pharmaceuticals, and renewable energy. Danish exports to the United States have continued to increase, and in 2019 the United States surpassed Germany to become Denmark’s largest export market.  Exports to the United States constituted 12.7 percent of total Danish exports in 2022.  The key category driving this increase continues to be chemicals, as one-third of Danish exports from this category went to the United States.

Imports of goods to Denmark in 2022 and 2021 from the United States (Source: Trade.Gov Data Bank)

  • Goods
    • Main Imports (% of total goods imports)
      • Oil and Gas: 35.1% (2022), 22.1% (2021)
      • Chemicals: 13.6% (2022), 20.8% (2021)
      • Computers and Electronic Products: 10.8% (2022), 12.9% (2021)
      • Machinery (excl. electrical): 5.6% (2022), 5.9% (2021)
      • Transporttaion Equipment: 5.3% (2022), 3.6% (2021)
      • Miscellanous Manufactores: 3.2% (2022), 3.5% (2021) 

Imports of goods and services in Denmark from the world are: (Source: Statistics Denmark)

  • Goods (2022)
    • Main Imports (% of total goods imports)
      • Machinery (excl. transport equipment): 20.6%
      • Miscellaneous Manufactured Articles: 16.2%
      • Live animals, food, beverages, and tobacco: 18.3%
      • Manufactured goods and articles: 14.0%
  • Services (2022)
    • Main imports (% of total services imports)
      • Sea transport: 41.5%
      • Other business services: 19.7% (2022)
      • Other services: 38.9%

The leading U.S. exports to Denmark are industrial machinery, capital equipment, computers and telecom products, software, aircraft, and scientific instruments.  Other important U.S. exports to Denmark are military equipment, chemicals and pharmaceuticals, tobacco, wine, fresh vegetables, nuts, and forest products.

There are more than 550 American subsidiaries established in Denmark and a strong American Chamber of Commerce with approximately 240 members.

Denmark is a firm advocate of liberal trade and investment policies and actively encourages foreign investment. 

Denmark’s standard of living is among the highest in the world with a GDP per capita of USD 68,827 in 2022 (World Bank).

The Danish economy emerged relatively unscathed from the pandemic, with a shallow 2 percent recession in 2020.  In 2022, the Danish economy grew by 3.8 percent, which was higher than the Eurozone average of 2.7 percent. The Danish government forecasts continued growth at a slower pace of 1.2 percent in 2023.  The unemployment rate in Denmark is also low, at 2.7 percent, which is below the Eurozone average of 6.8 percent.

The economy displays a number of strengths.  The “flexicurity” of labor market flexibility alongside the security of a strong social safety net helps adjust to shocks while limiting the social cost of unemployment and the risk that it could become entrenched.  The social welfare system ensures low poverty and low income inequality.

Denmark is a high income and technologically advanced society with state-of-the-art infrastructure and distribution systems, a highly skilled labor force, and a central location that makes it an excellent distribution point for the Scandinavian, Northern European, and Baltic markets.