Copenhagen – ‘Capital of Sustainable Meetings’
Copenhagen is Denmark‘s most prominent and capital city, situated partly on the eastern shore of the island of Zealand and partly on the island of Amager and many small inlets between the two.
Copenhagen’s urban area covers some 292.5 km2 (112.9 sq mi), and in 2010, official statistics estimated the population at 1,336,982 with a density of 4,600/km2 (12,000/sq mi). The majority of the population are Danes, with smaller Greenlandic Germans and those from non-Western backgrounds. The official language of Copenhagen is Danish, while English and German are widely spoken.
Copenhagen first became the capital of Denmark in the 15th century and today is a thriving cultural, educational, economic, and political hub. Copenhagen is consistently ranked as one of the top European cities in terms of quality of life and is also famed as one of the world’s most environmentally friendly cities.
Copenhagen Municipality is an administrative unit that is comprised of ten districts. The city council is the city’s supreme political body and has 55 members over four-year terms. Lars Henrik Weiss is the Lord Mayor of Copenhagen from October 19, 2020, to December 31, 2021. Sophie Hæstorp Andersen was chosen by the Social Democrats to be their main candidate for mayor of Copenhagen in 2021, replacing Frank Jensen, the Mayor of Copenhagen between 2010 and 2020.
The official currency of Copenhagen is the Danish Kroner (DKK).
Copenhagen is Denmark’s economic and financial heartland generating an estimated 43% national GDP.
Copenhagen’s tertiary sector is its most significant, with leading industries including science, tourism, retail, telecommunications, and financial services. The city has over 2,000 foreign companies, with more businesses choosing to locate their regional headquarters and distribution centers than in many other parts of Western Europe.
Life Sciences is a particularly notable industry, as the city is home to a cutting-edge science cluster of businesses working within Neuroscience, Cancer, Diabetes, Autoimmune, Allergies, and Infectious disease areas. Two of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world (Novo Nordisk and Lundbeck) are also located in the metropolitan region.
Copenhagen also enjoys one of the most extensive Information and communications technology clusters in Denmark that provides innovative industry solutions and a multitude of new product developments.
As one of the world’s most environmentally friendly cities, it is no surprise that the Cleantech sector is also a key player in driving the local economy forward.
Copenhagen has a modern and well-developed infrastructure that has established it as a central Northern European transport hub. The city is linked to other major cities and neighboring countries by well-maintained, toll-free motorways and a dense network of railways.
The city center operates a fast and efficient public transport system that consists of a metro system, suburban trains, and buses. Copenhagen’s Central Station is the largest in Denmark and operates frequent Intercity, regional, and S-trains to European cities, alongside extensive regional services to surrounding areas. The rail system is estimated to move more than 100,000 passengers per day.
The metro system opened between 2002 and 2007, has two main lines with 22 stations, and in 2009 was estimated to have carried 50 million passengers throughout the city.
Copenhagen’s International Airport is the city’s most prominent and serves the majority of Denmark and the Oresund region. Located 8 kilometers south of the city center and is the second busiest in all the Nordic countries, moving over 30.3 million passengers in 2019. Flight schedules serve most major destinations across the globe.
The city also boasts the Copenhagen-Malmö Port, which sees over 300 cruise ships arriving each year with an estimated 875,000 passengers (est. 2018). The port also operates frequent ferry services and waterbuses to surrounding areas.
According to Copenhagen Capacity, the city’s metropolitan workforce is estimated at 1,335,100, while in the greater Oresund Region, the total workforce is almost 1.9 million. The majority are employed in services, followed by industrial and agricultural sectors. Primary employment industries include public and personal services, finance and business, retail, and manufacturing. Danish is the most widely spoken language, but English and German are also frequently used.
The city benefits from a highly skilled and educated workforce that results from an excellent education system, which the government invests 7.752% of its GDP into each year. Schooling is compulsory and accessible to all children from 7 through to 16 years old. The system is financed through taxation and is divided into four levels, Preschool, Basic, Youth, and Higher education. The school system turned out a record 150,308 secondary school graduates in 2017.
As Denmark’s largest higher education hub, Copenhagen offers numerous public and state-run institutions. To aid further study, all local students age 20 and over are entitled to a monthly income provided by the government. The city’s leading higher education facility is the University of Copenhagen, which collaborates extensively with Oxford, Cambridge, Yale, and Berkley and is repeatedly ranked as one of Europe’s best universities.
According to official statistics, Copenhagen’s unemployment rate in 2020 stood at around 5.66%.
Business Costs in Copenhagen
Denmark’s taxation has undergone recent reforms, which have lowered levels to those in line with many other countries in Western Europe.
The Danish individual tax system is progressive, divided into county municipal, church, and national income taxes. National income tax works of a progressive system comprising three brackets from 0% to 15%. Local taxes vary from city to city, bringing the total tax paid by individuals to a rate of between 45% and 56%.
Corporate taxation is set at 22%, with foreign companies taxed on profits generated in the country.
The standard rate of VAT is set at 25%, with significant exemptions for rents, medicine, and newspapers.
The National Minimum wage across Denmark is set at approximately $18 per hour.
The average rental cost of an office in the Copenhagen harbor area was €282/sq.m per year.