Denmark

Political System

The Danish political system consists of a constitutional monarchy with a representative parliamentary system.

  • The Monarch: Queen Margrethe II is the head of state, possessing the powers of appointing the Prime Minister, signing Acts of Parliament into law, holding meetings with foreign officials, and receiving ambassadors.
  • The Executive: The Prime Minister acts as head of government and presides over the cabinet of Denmark. The ministers are determined by the Monarch and are responsible for heading government departments.
  • The Legislative: Consists of a unicameral Peoples Assembly (Folketing) composed of 179 seats, 2 of which represent Greenland and 2 of which represent the Faroe Islands. Members are elected directly by proportional representation from multi-seat constituencies and serve four year terms.
  • The Judiciary: The Supreme Court consists of a court president and 18 judges, each of which are appointed by the Monarch and recommended by the Minister of Justice and Judicial Appointments Council. The lower courts consist of the Special Court of Indictment and Revision, two High Courts, Maritime and Commercial Courts, and county courts.

[1]


[1] “The Danish System of Government.” Folketinget. N.P., 2 Jan. 2012. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

Current Political Leaders (2016)

[1]

  • Monarch: Queen Margrethe II, crowned in 1972.

  • Prime Minister: Lars Løkke Rasmussen, elected in June 2015 as head of the Centre-right Venstre (Liberal) Party.


[1] “Denmark Profile—Leaders.” BBC News. BBC, 27 Jan. 2016. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

National Statistics

[1]

  • Population: 5, 724, 456 (2016 est.)

  • Population Density: 129.23 per sq. km

  • Estimated per capita income: $46, 600 (2016 est.)

  • Racial Breakdown: Scandinavian, Inuit, Faroese, German, Turkish, Iranian, Somali

  •  Unemployment Rate: 4.2% (2016 est.)


[1] “The World Factbook: DENMARK.” Central Intelligence Agency. Central Intelligence Agency, 12 Jan. 2017. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

Refugee Resettlement Program History

-       1978: Beginning of the resettlement program, in cooperation with the UNHCR, the Resettlement Quota Committee, and the Danish Refugee Council.

-       1980’s: A large influx of migrants, constituting approximately 1% of the population (as of 2013, this was estimated to be 6%).

-       1989: Quota set at approximately 500 individuals a year.

-       2005: A change in laws abolished the Resettlement Quota Committee, leaving allocation up to the Minister of Refugees, the Minister of Justice, and the Danish Immigration Services. This year also marked the beginning of a three year flexible quota program, allowing unused places to roll over to the next year. Additionally, the Danish People’s Party introduced integration criteria.

-       2007: The first three-year flexible quota period ended in December, leaving 17 unfilled places that were then converted to funds managed in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

-       2007: Next three-year flexible quota period begins.

-       2011: The social democrats regain power, promising to ease strict regulations on migration. However, the policies were still strict, making Denmark on of the harshest on immigration in Europe.

-       2013: Second three-year flexible quota period ends.

[1]


[1] Syppli Kohl, Katrine. "The Evolution of Danish Refugee Resettlement Policy, 1978-2016." Norwegian Centre for Humanitarian Studies. CHR. Michelsen Institute, 24 Nov. 2016. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

Refugee Resettlement Program Funding

Despite being a member of the European Union, Denmark does not utilize the European Refugee Fund, due to its opting out of the Maastricht Treaty and the areas concerned with Justice and Home Affairs. However, the primary resettlement program, the Danish Refugee Council, receives its funding from the Danish development agency, Danida, and the UK Department for International Development.[1]


[1] “Funding Overview.” Danish Refugee Council. Danish Refugee Council, 04 Jan. 2016. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

Resettlement Data 2002-2014

Country of Origin

# Settled (2002-2014)

Afghanistan

145

Algeria

5

Angola

1

Azerbaijan

3

Bhutan

499

Burundi

93

Cambodia

26

Cameroon

2

Central African Republic

24

Chad

7

China

39

Congo

530

Colombia

333

Côte d’Ivoire

15

Dem. Rep. of Congo

1449

Djibouti

1

Ecuador

12

Egypt

1

Eritrea

124

Ethiopia

43

Estonia

14

India

3

Indonesia

255

Iran

383

Iraq

329

Jordan

2

Kenya

1

Liberia

47

Malaysia

1

Myanmar

1149

Nigeria

2

Nepal

2

Pakistan

8

Palestine

16

Rwanda

119

Russian Federation

1, 4, 1, 4, 9, 4, 8, 1, 8, 1,

Sierra Leone

13

Somalia

248

Sri Lanka

35

Stateless

487

Sudan

638

Syrian Arab Republic

126

Tunisia

17

Togo

3

Uganda

6

Uzbekistan

29

Vietnam

7

[1]


[1] “Resettlement Statistics- Denmark.” UNHCR Population Statistics. UNHCR, n.d. Wed. Feb. 2017.

Asylum Seekers Recognized

Country of Origin

2012

2013

2014

2015

Afghanistan

30

49

24

51

Armenia

-

9

0

-

Azerbaijan

-

11

5

0

Burundi

1

-

0

0

Bangladesh

2

1

0

0

Cameroon

-

2

0

0

China

2

1

0

0

Côte d’Ivoire

7

1

-

0

DRC

9

5

9

-

Djibouti

-

1

-

-

Eritrea

1

37

193

2713

Ethiopia

4

0

11

30

Georgia

-

2

0

-

Ghana

-

1

0

0

Guatemala

2

-

0

0

Guinea-Bissau

-

2

0

0

Iran

229

377

129

153

Iraq

7

9

-

5

Kenya

-

2

0

0

Kuwait

-

1

0

0

Kyrgyzstan

3

-

0

-

Lebanon

1

-

0

0

Mali

-

1

0

0

Morocco

2

1

0

0

Myanmar

1

3

-

-

Nigeria

-

2

0

0

Pakistan

5

14

5

-

Palestine

4

-

-

-

Russia

84

76

38

23

Rwanda

3

1

0

0

Sri Lanka

2

9

-

0

Sudan

8

7

5

8

Somalia

4

3

13

5

Syria

686

1046

3122

4209

Tajikistan

3

0

0

0

Uganda

0

16

8

23

Ukraine

-

9

0

-

Uzbekistan

6

0

0

0

Stateless

59

172

291

539

Zimbabwe

1

0

0

0

[1]


[1] “Asylum Seekers Statistics- Denmark.” UNHCR Population Statistics. UNHCR, n.d. Wed. Feb. 2017.

Resettlement Destinations

Refugees are assigned to municipalities in accordance with a distribution key in order to create an even dispersal throughout the country. Due to the ready availability of inexpensive housing, the majority of refugees are placed in smaller municipalities in the rural part of the country. Though placement is assigned, refugees are free to move between municipalities. Each initial municipality is responsible for the financial support of individual refugees.[1]


[1] “Denmark” European Resettlement Network. ICMC Europe, 2013. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

Refugee Resettlement Diagram

Refugee Resettlement Overview

Beginning in 1979, Denmark adopted a refugee quota of approximately 500 per year, for which places are allocated by the Minister of Justice and NGO’s such as the Danish Immigration Service and the Danish Refugee Council. Such places are divided into four sub quotas:

  • Geographical Category: 395 refugees per year

  • Emergency and Urgent Category: 75 places reserved per year for those at immediate risk.

  • Medical Category: 30 places reserved under the UNHCR Twenty-or-More program.

  • Families Category: Accepted on a dossier basis who are accompanying someone admitted into the country under the Twenty-or-More program; factored into the geographical quota.

In order to qualify for refugee status, the person must meet the standards set in the 1951 Convention on Refugee Status and the additional criteria set by the country’s legislation. Resettlement takes place with the aid of the UNHCR. Denmark has instituted criteria pertaining to the integration process, including elements such as language and literacy requirements, educational and employment experience, motivation to integrate, and age. Such criteria are not applied to urgent cases. Processing time usually consists of 5-6 months, though priority cases average 3 months.[1]


[1] The Government of Denmark. “Denmark.” UNHCR Resettlement Handbook. UNHCR, 2011.

Lead Resettlement Organizations

Danish Refugee Council[1]

Established: 1956

Funding: The primary sources of funding consist of the Danish development agency, Danida, and the UK Department for International Development.

Responsibilities and Functions: The DRC consists of a team of experts that work with the UN to fill short-term vacancies in employment. Additionally, this organization works to better the UN system towards its goals for humanitarian development. Finally, the DRC has developed the ‘Stand-by Roster’ in an effort to help staffing arrangements within the UN to enhance its emergency response system.

Affiliates and Partners: The DRC has agreements with 8 UN agencies (UNHCR, UNICEF, World Food Programme, the OCHA, the FAO, the UNDP, the UNFPA, and the UNRWA) along with the International Organization for Migration.


[1] “About Us.” Danish Refugee Council. Danish Refugee Council, 04 Jan. 2016. Web. 26 Feb. 2017.

 



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