Copenhagen at a Glance
Copenhagen’s Business EnvironmentiStockphoto
Copenhagen boasts an exceptional business environment in terms of infrastructure, location, and flexibility.
The Central Business District
Copenhagen’s central business district is considered one of the newest and most dynamic business areas in Northern Europe. It is also referred to as Ørestad City and located in Ørestad, Copenhagen’s newest district, on the island of Amager. Even before the first buildings were constructed in this area, the entire infrastructure and connection to Copenhagen’s public transportation system was planned out. The Øresund bridge, the train station Ørestad, and the airport Kastrup can easily be reached.
Many international companies have opened offices here and many will, as the region is constantly being expanded and developed further. DELL, UCB Pharma Nordics, Nikon, Accenture, and Novo Nordisk Scandinavia are just some of the businesses located in Ørestad.
Aside from Ørestad City, the district contains three other neighborhoods: Universitetskvarteret, Amager Fælled kvarteret, and Vestamagerkvarteret. The close proximity to the university allows for excellent research opportunities. All in all, Ørestad aspires to become the main business hub in Northern Europe.
Flexicurity: The Danish Work Culture
Copenhagen’s workforce includes about 1.3 million in Copenhagen and even 1.9 million people in the entire Øresund region, offering the biggest and most coherent labor market in all of Scandinavia. Moreover, the Danes are extremely efficient and productive. Although the average Danish work week consists of only five days (37 hours in total), the Danes put a lot of effort into their work. This, however, is also partly due to their “flexicurity” model.
Denmark’s “flexicurity” model is the result of the country’s social welfare system, combined with its active employment policies and the flexibility of the labor market. This model allows for above-average job mobility for expats who are fluent in Danish. The welfare state offers a high level of security and protection. For instance, changing your job has no effect whatsoever on your pension entitlements. This is particularly prevalent in Copenhagen, where the workforce is an incredible diverse one.
Paying Taxes in Copenhagen
Expats working in Copenhagen should be prepared to find a letter from the Danish tax authority (SKAT) in the mail twice a year. Your taxes are used to support the country’s welfare programs and are thus rather high. For most expats working in Copenhagen, the high tax rates come as a shock at first. On the upside, however, you benefit from excellent health services and free public education.
Please remember that, aside from your income tax, you will be charged 25% VAT when buying goods. This tax is even higher for so-called luxury items like alcohol or petrol. Tax revenues from goods and services are an important source of income for the government and make up 34% of the entirety of tax revenues. For more information on taxes and pensions, please also read our guide on working in Denmark.