Denmark and the European Union

Since joining the European Community in 1973, Denmark has held the EU Presidency for at least seven times. Its main reason for joining the union was to safeguard its agricultural exports to the United Kingdom. The two countries were so economically linked that Denmark considered it necessary to be a member if UK is one as well.

So far, Denmark’s active membership in the union has been spent on working for an efficient and well-functioning internal market as well as arriving at decisions in the most transparent manner possible. Obtaining clear and visible results for the Danes is also a main driving factor in Denmark’s participation in the community. It is a fact that most actions and decisions are guided by the standard of how any change will affect the lives of its citizens.

Denmark has not yet adopted the euro and still uses the krone as its official currency. The proposal to use it was defeated in a referendum. There are political parties who are for the proposal thus the continuing efforts to introduce a second referendum. However, support for the use of the euro greatly waned in the light of the European debt crisis.

The non-adoption of the euro is only one of the opt-outs Denmark has adopted in its union membership, the others being on defense, justice, and home affairs. This has put the country in a somewhat paradoxical position especially considering how it is able to drive the EU forward during its periods of presidency. Therefore, everything is generally in a wait-and-see mode.

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