Øresund region integration falling, according to new figures – The Post

Øresund region integration falling, according to new figures

Differences in salaries and house prices have fallen since bridge opened in 2000

The level of integration is still higher than when the Øresund Bridge opened (photo: iStock)
June 5th, 2015 9:59 am| by Philip Tees
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Local politicians on both sides of the Øresund are pushing for more integration between Zealand and Scania, potentially under the banner of Greater Copenhagen.

But Öresundskomiteen, the official platform for regional political co-operation between the Danish and Swedish regions, has revealed figures showing that integration has fallen in the past year.

READ MORE: Swedish politicians back plans for a ‘Greater Copenhagen’ and Øresund parliament

Untapped potential
Finn Lauritzen, the head of Öresundskomiteen, said that there was untapped potential in further integration.

“We need to do better,” he said.

“The Øresund region, with almost 4 million inhabitants, has huge potential for creating jobs and growth if the region can be made into one job market. But regional integration doesn’t happen on its own – it requires investment in the region.”

The indexes responsible for the fall are job market and housing market integration.

Train tickets between Zealand and Scania were found earlier this year to be the most expensive in Europe, which can contribute to a reluctance to commute over the Øresund.

READ MORE: Øresund train tickets: most expensive in Europe

Another explanation is that the differences in salaries and house prices have reduced since the early 2000s, taking away the incentive for some to live and work on different sides of the water.

Despite the recent decline, integration is still higher than when the Øresund Bridge opened in 2000.