Changing of the guard in the large octagonal courtyard of the Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen. The plaza is bordered by four buildings with identical facades, which serve as the winter home of the royal family.
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Once the seat of Viking raiders and later a major north European power, Denmark has evolved into a modern, prosperous nation that is participating in the general political and economic integration of Europe. It joined NATO in 1949 and the EEC (now the EU) in 1973. However, the country has opted out of certain elements of the EU's Maastricht Treaty, including the European Economic and Monetary Union, European defense cooperation, and issues concerning certain justice and home affairs.

Visit the Definitions and Notes page to view a description of each topic.



Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, on a peninsula north of Germany (Jutland); also includes several major islands (Sjaelland, Fyn, and Bornholm)

Geographic coordinates

56 00 N, 10 00 E


total: 43,094 sq km

land: 42,434 sq km

water: 660 sq km

note: includes the island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea and the rest of metropolitan Denmark (the Jutland Peninsula, and the major islands of Sjaelland and Fyn), but excludes the Faroe Islands and Greenland

country comparison to the world: 133

Area - comparative

slightly less than twice the size of Massachusetts; about two-thirds the size of West Virginia

<p>slightly less than twice the size of Massachusetts; about two-thirds the size of West Virginia</p>

Land boundaries

total: 140 km

border countries (1): Germany 140 km


7,314 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation


temperate; humid and overcast; mild, windy winters and cool summers


low and flat to gently rolling plains


highest point: Mollehoj/Ejer Bavnehoj 171 m

lowest point: Lammefjord -7 m

mean elevation: 34 m

Natural resources

petroleum, natural gas, fish, arable land, salt, limestone, chalk, stone, gravel and sand

Land use

agricultural land: 63.4% (2018 est.)

arable land: 58.9% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.1% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 4.4% (2018 est.)

forest: 12.9% (2018 est.)

other: 23.7% (2018 est.)

note: highest percentage of arable land for any country in the world

Irrigated land

4,350 sq km (2012)

Population distribution

with excellent access to the North Sea, Skagerrak, Kattegat, and the Baltic Sea, population centers tend to be along coastal areas, particularly in Copenhagen and the eastern side of the country's mainland

Natural hazards

flooding is a threat in some areas of the country (e.g., parts of Jutland, along the southern coast of the island of Lolland) that are protected from the sea by a system of dikes

Geography - note

composed of the Jutland Peninsula and a group of more than 400 islands (Danish Archipelago); controls Danish Straits (Skagerrak and Kattegat) linking Baltic and North Seas; about one-quarter of the population lives in greater Copenhagen

People and Society


noun: Dane(s)

adjective: Danish

Ethnic groups

Danish (includes Greenlandic (who are predominantly Inuit) and Faroese) 86.3%, Turkish 1.1%, other 12.6% (largest groups are Polish, Syrian, German, Iraqi, and Romanian) (2018 est.)

note: data represent population by ancestry


Danish, Faroese, Greenlandic (an Inuit dialect), German (small minority); note - English is the predominant second language

major-language sample(s):
Verdens Faktabog, den uundværlig kilde til grundlæggende oplysninger. (Danish)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.

Danish audio sample:


Evangelical Lutheran (official) 74.7%, Muslim 5.5%, other/none/unspecified (denominations of less than 1% each in descending order of size include Roman Catholic, Jehovah's Witness, Serbian Orthodox Christian, Jewish, Baptist, Buddhist, Church of Jesus Christ, Pentecostal, and nondenominational Christian) 19.8% (2019 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 16.42% (male 494,806/female 469,005)

15-24 years: 12.33% (male 370,557/female 352,977)

25-54 years: 38.71% (male 1,149,991/female 1,122,016)

55-64 years: 12.63% (male 370,338/female 371,149)

65 years and over: 19.91% (male 538,096/female 630,475) (2020 est.)

This is the population pyramid for Denmark. A population pyramid illustrates the age and sex structure of a country's population and may provide insights about political and social stability, as well as economic development. The population is distributed along the horizontal axis, with males shown on the left and females on the right. The male and female populations are broken down into 5-year age groups represented as horizontal bars along the vertical axis, with the youngest age groups at the bottom and the oldest at the top. The shape of the population pyramid gradually evolves over time based on fertility, mortality, and international migration trends. <br/><br/>For additional information, please see the entry for Population pyramid on the Definitions and Notes page.

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 57.3

youth dependency ratio: 25.6

elderly dependency ratio: 31.7

potential support ratio: 3.2 (2020 est.)

Median age

total: 42 years

male: 40.9 years

female: 43.1 years (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 38

Birth rate

11.17 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 171

Death rate

9.5 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 45

Net migration rate

2.74 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 39

Population distribution

with excellent access to the North Sea, Skagerrak, Kattegat, and the Baltic Sea, population centers tend to be along coastal areas, particularly in Copenhagen and the eastern side of the country's mainland


urban population: 88.2% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 0.54% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Major urban areas - population

1.359 million COPENHAGEN (capital) (2021)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.02 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 1 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.85 male(s)/female

total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2020 est.)

Mother's mean age at first birth

29.7 years (2019 est.)

Maternal mortality ratio

4 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 172

Infant mortality rate

total: 3.09 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 3.54 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 2.6 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 213

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 81.45 years

male: 79.52 years

female: 83.51 years (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 35

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)

Physicians density

4.01 physicians/1,000 population (2016)

Hospital bed density

2.6 beds/1,000 population (2019)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS

6,700 (2020 est.)

note: estimate does not include children

country comparison to the world: 117

HIV/AIDS - deaths

<100 (2020 est.)

note: estimate does not include children

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 19 years

male: 18 years

female: 19 years (2019)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24

total: 11.6%

male: 12.6%

female: 10.6% (2020 est.)


Environment - current issues

air pollution, principally from vehicle and power plant emissions; nitrogen and phosphorus pollution of the North Sea; drinking and surface water becoming polluted from animal wastes and pesticides; much of country's household and industrial waste is recycled

Environment - international agreements

party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Heavy Metals, Air Pollution-Multi-effect Protocol, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 2006, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: Antarctic-Environmental Protection

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 10.12 micrograms per cubic meter (2016 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 31.79 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 6.54 megatons (2020 est.)


temperate; humid and overcast; mild, windy winters and cool summers

Land use

agricultural land: 63.4% (2018 est.)

arable land: 58.9% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.1% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 4.4% (2018 est.)

forest: 12.9% (2018 est.)

other: 23.7% (2018 est.)

note: highest percentage of arable land for any country in the world


urban population: 88.2% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 0.54% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Revenue from coal

coal revenues: 0% of GDP (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 88

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 4.485 million tons (2015 est.)

municipal solid waste recycled annually: 1,223,060 tons (2015 est.)

percent of municipal solid waste recycled: 27.3% (2015 est.)

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 381.5 million cubic meters (2017 est.)

industrial: 32.9 million cubic meters (2017 est.)

agricultural: 326.7 million cubic meters (2017 est.)

Total renewable water resources

6 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)


Country name

conventional long form: Kingdom of Denmark

conventional short form: Denmark

local long form: Kongeriget Danmark

local short form: Danmark

etymology: the name derives from the words "Dane(s)" and "mark"; the latter referring to a march (borderland) or forest

Government type

parliamentary constitutional monarchy


name: Copenhagen

geographic coordinates: 55 40 N, 12 35 E

time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October; note - applies to continental Denmark only, not to its North Atlantic components

etymology: name derives from the city's Danish appellation Kobenhavn, meaning "Merchant's Harbor"

Administrative divisions

metropolitan Denmark - 5 regions (regioner, singular - region); Hovedstaden (Capital), Midtjylland (Central Jutland), Nordjylland (North Jutland), Sjaelland (Zealand), Syddanmark (Southern Denmark)


ca. 965 (unified and Christianized under HARALD I Gormsson); 5 June 1849 (became a parliamentary constitutional monarchy)

National holiday

Constitution Day, 5 June (1849); note - closest equivalent to a national holiday


history: several previous; latest adopted 5 June 1953

amendments: proposed by the Folketing with consent of the government; passage requires approval by the next Folketing following a general election, approval by simple majority vote of at least 40% of voters in a referendum, and assent of the chief of state; changed several times, last in 2009 (Danish Act of Succession)

Legal system

civil law; judicial review of legislative acts

International law organization participation

accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction


citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Denmark

dual citizenship recognized: yes

residency requirement for naturalization: 7 years


18 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: Queen MARGRETHE II (since 14 January 1972); Heir Apparent Crown Prince FREDERIK (elder son of the monarch, born on 26 May 1968)

head of government: Prime Minister Mette FREDERIKSEN (since 27 June 2019)

cabinet: Council of State appointed by the monarch

elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition usually appointed prime minister by the monarch

Legislative branch

description: unicameral People's Assembly or Folketing (179 seats, including 2 each representing Greenland and the Faroe Islands; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by party-list proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms unless the Folketing is dissolved earlier)

elections: last held on 5 June 2019 (next to be held in June 2023)

election results: percent of vote by party - SDP 25.9%, V 23.4%, DF 8.7%, SLP 8.6%, SF 7.7%, EL 6.9%, C 6.6%, AP 3.0%, NB 2.4%, LA 2.3%; seats by party - SDP 48, V 43, DF 16, SLP 16, SF 14, EL 13, C 12, AP 5, NB 4, LA 4; composition (as of September 2021) - men 108, women 71 (includes 2 from Greenland), percent of women 39.7%

Judicial branch

highest courts: Supreme Court (consists of the court president and 18 judges)

judge selection and term of office: judges appointed by the monarch upon the recommendation of the Minister of Justice, with the advice of the Judicial Appointments Council, a 6-member independent body of judges and lawyers; judges appointed for life with retirement at age 70

subordinate courts: Special Court of Indictment and Revision; 2 High Courts; Maritime and Commercial Court; county courts

Political parties and leaders

The Alternative AP (Franciska ROSENKILDE)
Conservative People's Party or DKF or C [Soren PAPE POULSEN]
Danish People's Party or DF or O [Kristian THULESEN DAHL]
Liberal Alliance or LA or I [Alex VANOPSLAGH]
Liberal Party (Venstre) or V [Jakob ELLEMANN-JENSEN]
New Right Party or NB or D [Pernille VERMUND]
Red-Green Alliance (Unity List) or EL [collective leadership, Mai VILLADSEN, spokesperson]
Social Democrats or SDP or A [Mette FREDERIKSEN]
Social Liberal Party or SLP or B [Sofie CARSTEN NIELSEN]
Socialist People's Party or SF or F [Pia OLSEN DYHR]

International organization participation

ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council, Australia Group, BIS, CBSS, CD, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-9, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINUSMA, NATO, NC, NEA, NIB, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, Schengen Convention, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNRWA, UNTSO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic representation in the US

chief of mission: Ambassador Lone Dencker WISBORG (since 8 April 2019)

chancery: 3200 Whitehaven Street NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 234-4300

FAX: [1] (202) 328-1470

email address and website:

consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, New York, Silicon Valley (CA)

Diplomatic representation from the US

chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Stuart A. DWYER (since 20 January 2021)

embassy: Dag Hammarskjolds Alle 24, 2100 Kobenhavn 0

mailing address: 5280 Copenhagen Place, Washington DC  20521-5280

telephone: [45] 33-41-71-00

FAX: [45] 35-43-02-23

email address and website:

Flag description

red with a white cross that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side; the banner is referred to as the Dannebrog (Danish flag) and is one of the oldest national flags in the world; traditions as to the origin of the flag design vary, but the best known is a legend that the banner fell from the sky during an early-13th century battle; caught up by the Danish king before it ever touched the earth, this heavenly talisman inspired the royal army to victory; in actuality, the flag may derive from a crusade banner or ensign

note: the shifted cross design element was subsequently adopted by the other Nordic countries of Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, as well as by the Faroe Islands

National symbol(s)

lion, mute swan; national colors: red, white

National anthem

name: "Der er et yndigt land" (There is a Lovely Country); "Kong Christian" (King Christian)

lyrics/music: Adam Gottlob OEHLENSCHLAGER/Hans Ernst KROYER; Johannes EWALD/unknown

note: Denmark has two national anthems with equal status; "Der er et yndigt land," adopted 1844, is a national anthem, while "Kong Christian," adopted 1780, serves as both a national and royal anthem; "Kong Christian" is also known as "Kong Christian stod ved hojen mast" (King Christian Stood by the Lofty Mast) and "Kongesangen" (The King's Anthem); within Denmark, the royal anthem is played only when royalty is present and is usually followed by the national anthem; when royalty is not present, only the national anthem is performed; outside Denmark, the royal anthem is played, unless the national anthem is requested


Economic overview

This thoroughly modern market economy features advanced industry with world-leading firms in pharmaceuticals, maritime shipping, and renewable energy, and a high-tech agricultural sector. Danes enjoy a high standard of living, and the Danish economy is characterized by extensive government welfare measures and an equitable distribution of income. An aging population will be a long-term issue.

Denmark’s small open economy is highly dependent on foreign trade, and the government strongly supports trade liberalization. Denmark is a net exporter of food, oil, and gas and enjoys a comfortable balance of payments surplus, but depends on imports of raw materials for the manufacturing sector.

Denmark is a member of the EU but not the eurozone. Despite previously meeting the criteria to join the European Economic and Monetary Union, Denmark has negotiated an opt-out with the EU and is not required to adopt the euro.

Denmark is experiencing a modest economic expansion. The economy grew by 2.0% in 2016 and 2.1% in 2017. The expansion is expected to decline slightly in 2018. Unemployment stood at 5.5% in 2017, based on the national labor survey. The labor market was tight in 2017, with corporations experiencing some difficulty finding appropriately-skilled workers to fill billets. The Danish Government offers extensive programs to train unemployed persons to work in sectors that need qualified workers.

Denmark maintained a healthy budget surplus for many years up to 2008, but the global financial crisis swung the budget balance into deficit. Since 2014 the balance has shifted between surplus and deficit. In 2017 there was a surplus of 1.0%. The government projects a lower deficit in 2018 and 2019 of 0.7%, and public debt (EMU debt) as a share of GDP is expected to decline to 35.6% in 2018 and 34.8% in 2019. The Danish Government plans to address increasing municipal, public housing and integration spending in 2018.

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$326.2 billion note: data are in 2017 dollars (2020 est.)

$335.36 billion note: data are in 2017 dollars (2019 est.)

$326.07 billion note: data are in 2017 dollars (2018 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars

country comparison to the world: 53

Real GDP growth rate

2.85% (2019 est.)

2.18% (2018 est.)

2.83% (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 101

Real GDP per capita

$55,900 note: data are in 2017 dollars (2020 est.)

$57,700 note: data are in 2017 dollars (2019 est.)

$56,300 note: data are in 2017 dollars (2018 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars

country comparison to the world: 20

GDP (official exchange rate)

$350.037 billion (2019 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

0.7% (2019 est.)

0.8% (2018 est.)

1.1% (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 52

Credit ratings

Fitch rating: AAA (2003)

Moody's rating: Aaa (1999)

Standard & Poors rating: AAA (2001)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 1.3% (2017 est.)

industry: 22.9% (2017 est.)

services: 75.8% (2017 est.)

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 48% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 25.2% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 20% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: -0.2% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 54.5% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -47.5% (2017 est.)

Agricultural products

milk, wheat, barley, potatoes, sugar beet, pork, rye, rapeseed, oats, poultry


wind turbines, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, shipbuilding and refurbishment, iron, steel, nonferrous metals, chemicals, food processing, machinery and transportation equipment, textiles and clothing, electronics, construction, furniture and other wood products

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 2.4%

industry: 18.3%

services: 79.3% (2016 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 9%

highest 10%: 23.4% (2016 est.)


revenues: 172.5 billion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 168.9 billion (2017 est.)

Public debt

35.3% of GDP (2017 est.)

37.9% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: data cover general government debt and include debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intra-governmental debt; intragovernmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment; debt instruments for the social funds are not sold at public auctions

country comparison to the world: 151

Fiscal year

calendar year

Current account balance

$30.935 billion (2019 est.)

$24.821 billion (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 12


$191.53 billion note: data are in current year dollars (2020 est.)

$204.14 billion note: data are in current year dollars (2019 est.)

$200.81 billion note: data are in current year dollars (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 31

Exports - partners

Germany 14%, United States 11%, Sweden 10%, United Kingdom 7%, Norway 6%, Netherlands 5%, China 5% (2019)

Exports - commodities

packaged medicines, electric generators, pork, refined petroleum, medical cultures/vaccines (2019)


$170.33 billion note: data are in current year dollars (2020 est.)

$178.44 billion note: data are in current year dollars (2019 est.)

$179.95 billion note: data are in current year dollars (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 32

Imports - partners

Germany 21%, Sweden 11%, Netherlands 8%, China 7% (2019)

Imports - commodities

cars, refined petroleum, packaged medicines, crude petroleum, broadcasting equipment (2019)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$75.25 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$64.25 billion (31 December 2016 est.)

country comparison to the world: 30

Debt - external

$504.808 billion (2019 est.)

$517.972 billion (2018 est.)

country comparison to the world: 24

Exchange rates

Danish kroner (DKK) per US dollar -

6.16045 (2020 est.)

6.7506 (2019 est.)

6.5533 (2018 est.)

6.7236 (2014 est.)

5.6125 (2013 est.)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24

total: 11.6%

male: 12.6%

female: 10.6% (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 127


Electricity access

electrification - total population: 100% (2020)


Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 937,469 (2020)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 16.19 (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 75

Telephones - mobile cellular

total subscriptions: 7,144,123 (2020)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 123.3 (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 103

Telecommunication systems

general assessment: Denmark has one of the highest broadband penetration rates globally, with near universal availability of superfast connections; progressive regulator encouraged upgrades to cable and DSL infrastructure; fast growing fiber networks with aim for nation-wide build-out; comprehensive LTE with 90% coverage of 5G; operator expands NB-IoT across its LTE network; survey underway for cable connecting Denmark to Norway; upgrades to submarine cable connection to North America; importer of broadcasting equipment from EU neighbors (2020)

domestic: fixed-line 17 per 100, 126 per 100 for mobile-cellular (2019)

international: country code - 45; landing points for the NSC, COBRAcable, CANTAT-3, DANICE, Havfrue/AEC-2, TAT-14m Denmark-Norway-5 & 6, Skagenfiber West & East, GC1, GC2, GC3, GC-KPN, Kattegat 1 & 2 & 3, Energinet Lyngsa-Laeso, Energinet Laeso-Varberg, Fehmarn Balt, Baltica, German-Denmark 2 & 3, Ronne-Rodvig, Denmark-Sweden 15 & 16 & 17 & 18, IP-Only Denmark-Sweden, Scandinavian South, Scandinavian Ring North, Danica North, 34 series of fiber-optic submarine cables link Denmark with Canada, Faroe Islands, Germany, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden, US and UK; satellite earth stations - 18 (6 Intelsat, 10 Eutelsat, 1 Orion, 1 Inmarsat (Blaavand-Atlantic-East)); note - the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden) share the Danish earth station and the Eik, Norway, station for worldwide Inmarsat access (2019)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments

Broadcast media

strong public-sector TV presence with state-owned Danmarks Radio (DR) operating 6 channels and publicly owned TV2 operating roughly a half-dozen channels; broadcasts of privately owned stations are available via satellite and cable feed; DR operates 4 nationwide FM radio stations, 10 digital audio broadcasting stations, and 14 web-based radio stations; 140 commercial and 187 community (non-commercial) radio stations (2019)

Internet users

total: 5.69 million (2021 est.)

percent of population: 96.55% (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 84

Broadband - fixed subscriptions

total: 2,571,736 (2020)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 44.4 (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 50


National air transport system

number of registered air carriers: 10 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 76

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 582,011 (2015)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 0 mt-km (2015)

Airports - with paved runways

total: 28

over 3,047 m: 2

2,438 to 3,047 m: 7

1,524 to 2,437 m: 5

914 to 1,523 m: 12

under 914 m: 2 (2017)

Airports - with unpaved runways

total: 52

914 to 1,523 m: 5

under 914 m: 47 (2013)


1536 km gas, 330 km oil (2015)


total: 3,476 km (2017)

standard gauge: 3,476 km 1.435-m gauge (1,756 km electrified) (2017)

country comparison to the world: 57


total: 74,558 km (2017)

paved: 74,558 km (includes 1,205 km of expressways) (2017)

country comparison to the world: 67

Merchant marine

total: 717

by type: bulk carrier 8, container ship 148, general cargo 68, oil tanker 105, other 388 (2021)

country comparison to the world: 33

Ports and terminals

major seaport(s): Baltic Sea - Aarhus, Copenhagen, Fredericia, Kalundborg

cruise port(s): Copenhagen

river port(s): Aalborg (Langerak)

dry bulk cargo port(s): Ensted (coal)

North Sea - Esbjerg,

Military and Security

Military and security forces

Danish Armed Forces (Forsvaret): Royal Danish Army, Royal Danish Navy, Royal Danish Air Force, Danish Home Guard (Reserves) (2021)

note - the Danish military maintains a Joint Arctic Command with the mission of protecting the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Denmark in the Arctic Region, including the Faroe Islands and Greenland; it also conducts maritime pollution prevention, environmental monitoring, fishery inspections, search and rescue, hydrographical surveys, and provides support to governmental science missions

Military expenditures

1.4% of GDP (2020)

1.3% of GDP (2019)

1.28% of GDP (2018)

1.14% of GDP (2017)

1.15% of GDP (2016)

country comparison to the world: 90

Military and security service personnel strengths

the Danish military has approximately 16,000 active duty personnel (8,000 Army; 3,000 Navy; 3,000 Air Force; 2,000 other) (2021)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the Danish military inventory is comprised of a mix of modern European, US, and domestically-produced equipment; the US is the largest supplier of military equipment to Denmark since 2010; the Danish defense industry is active in the production of naval vessels, defense electronics, and subcomponents of larger weapons systems, such as the US F-35 fighter aircraft (2021)

Military deployments

140 Middle East/Iraq (NATO) (2021)

Military service age and obligation

18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; conscripts serve an initial training period that varies from 4 to 12 months depending on specialization; former conscripts are assigned to mobilization units; women eligible to volunteer for military service; in addition to full time employment, the Danish Military offers reserve contracts in all three branches (2021)

Military - note

Denmark is a member of NATO and was one of the original 12 countries to sign the North Atlantic Treaty (also known as the Washington Treaty) in 1949

Denmark is a member of the EU, but opted out of the EU’s Common Defense and Security Policy, and therefore does not participate in EU military operations or in the cooperation on development and acquisition of military capabilities within the EU framework

the Danish Armed Forces cooperate closely with the militaries of other Nordic countries through the Nordic Defense Cooperation (NORDEFCO), which consists of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden; areas of cooperation include armaments, education, human resources, training and exercises, and operations; NORDEFCO was established in 2009

in 2018, the Defense Ministers of Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the creation of a Composite Special Operations Component Command (C-SOCC); the C-SOCC was declared operational in December 2020


Terrorist group(s)

Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham (ISIS); Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps/Qods Force

note: details about the history, aims, leadership, organization, areas of operation, tactics, targets, weapons, size, and sources of support of the group(s) appear(s) in Appendix-T

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

Iceland, the UK, and Ireland dispute Denmark's claim that the Faroe Islands' continental shelf extends beyond 200 nm; sovereignty dispute with Canada over Hans Island in the Kennedy Channel between Ellesmere Island and Greenland; Denmark (Greenland) and Norway have made submissions to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) and Russia is collecting additional data to augment its 2001 CLCS submission

Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 19,878 (Syria), 5,399 (Eritrea) (2020)

stateless persons: 11,655 (2020)