Danish business owners nervous about US presidential elections

Denmark needs the US to continue promoting free trade, says Dansk Industri

The Danish business community is concerned about the result of the upcoming US presidential election, citing fears it will significantly impact economic growth and employment rates in Denmark.

According to Dansk Industri, the confederation of Danish industry, the United States is Denmark’s third largest export market after Germany and Sweden.

Last year, Danish exports to the American market exceeded 100 billion kroner – around 9.5 percent of Denmark’s total exports.

In 2014, some 52,000 Danish jobs were either directly or indirectly linked to Danish exports to the US and about 65,000 people in the United States are employed by Danish companies through their subsidiaries.

READ MORE: If Denmark was the US, would we have our own Trump?

Danish pumps and furniture
“The presidential election has an impact on the global and national agenda in the United States,” contended Kim Nøhr Skibsted, the communications director at Grundfos.

“It is clear that the next president will be able to indirectly affect our way of doing business in the United States.”

The Danish supplier for pumps and pump solutions employs 1,200 people in the US and currently imports products and services from Denmark to the American market worth more than 100 billion kroner per year.

The furniture manufacturer Fritz Hansen is also following the US election closely and hopes the new American president will continue to ensure growth in the American economy and enhance the recent positive developments in the housing market.

The company sells designer furniture worth 75 million kroner to the American market every year.

READ MORE: More Danish companies bringing production home

Headed in isolationist direction
Karsten Dybvad, the CEO of Dansk Industri, is concerned that the next US president may choose to pull the country in a more isolationist direction and drop the free trade banner, which would negatively affect not only Denmark, but also the rest of the world.

“Denmark’s success and prosperity is based on the fact that we have been able to grasp opportunities abroad and generate growth and jobs at home,” Dybvad stated.

“We need an open United States to come out fighting on the same side as us.”

According to Peter Thagesen, the head of international market policy at Dansk Industri, both Trump and Clinton support the protectionist agenda and have criticised the trade negotiations between the US and the EU, also known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

Trump has, however, stated that he would roll back not only future trade negotiations but also existing agreements, regulations and institutions, promising he would introduce import duties on Mexico and China, which could trigger a trade war between these nations, warned Thagesen.

The US presidential election will take place on Tuesday November 8.