Morning Briefing – Monday, October 7

The Copenhagen Post’s daily round-up of the front pages and other major Danish news stories

Be fruitful
A political proposal to come up with suggestions for how Denmark can reverse its declining birth rate is being warmly received by a number of political parties that normally disagree. Denmark’s birth rate last year was the lowest in 25 years, and the birth rate hasn't been high enough to sustain the population since 1968. In response, Özlem Cekic (Socialistisk Folkeparti) called for experts to present their ideas for how to encourage Danes to have more children. But while Konservative and Dansk Folkeparti lent their support to the plan, other parties, including the prime minister’s Socialdemokraterne, said a low birth rate was not necessarily a problem, provided that jobs left vacant due to the dwindling number of Danes could be filled by immigrants. A Socialdemokraterne party spokesperson pointed out, however, that the low birth rate stood in contrast to people’s stated wishes that they would like to have more children. – Politiken

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Final wishes
Even though the vast majority of Danes say they would like to spend their final hours in their own home or in a hospice, only about 50 percent actually do so. But, while people’s final wishes are, by and large, not being heard, what some specialists in the field suggest is that what the elderly want is not to die at home, but in a homely surrounding. Birgit Bülow, who operates a hospice on the island of Lolland, suggested that better nursing home care would improve how comfortable residents felt spending their final days there. Others suggested that improved palliative care could help people remain in their own home until they passed away. – Jyllands-Posten

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Waste not
As the government prepares to present its proposals for spending 200 million kroner to encouraging more recycling on Monday, an unpublished Environment Ministry report concludes that greater recycling among businesses can save seven billion kroner annually. Increasing the amount of waste companies recycle will go a long way towards the government attaining its goal of doubling the amount of waste recycled nationwide. The vast majority of waste produced in Denmark is incinerated in power plants, but the new plan calls for 570,000 tonnes of that waste to instead be recycled by 2050. The average Dane throws away 700 kilograms of waste each year. – DR Nyheder

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Danske dissatisfied
New Danske Bank managing director Thomas Borgen has his work cut out for him if he hopes to win back the confidence of some of the bank’s most important customers. A recent poll showed that Danske Bank’s business customers, traditionally one of its largest sources of income, are among the least satisfied in the industry. Customers complained over the bank’s variety of products, service levels and availability. Bank analysts said the declining satisfaction among corporate depositors was a worry, since they were less likely to be to be influenced by popular attitudes. – Erhverv & Økonomi

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Editorial Excerpt | Dong in good hands
The state will retain its majority ownership of DONG, but in the long term, its majority can be reduced [from the current 60 percent] even further. All it needs is a big enough majority to prevent a foreign company, such as Russia’s Gazprom, from securing a decisive number of shares. For Denmark, making sure this doesn’t happen is a security issue. – Berlingske

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