Danish News Round-Up: Hold op! There were zero bank robberies in 2022

In mid-December, CPH POST reported how there were only two banks left in Denmark with cashiers

They are both branches of Danske Bank and located in Copenhagen and Aarhus, and TV2 was able to demonstrate that both tend to have very long queues.

But the frustration of pensioners, who never got a NemID account (let alone a MitID), cannot compare with the anguish of another segment of society.

The bank robbers of Denmark simply have nowhere to go!

From 221 to zero in just 22 years
Last year was the first in modern history in which there were no bank robberies, according to Finans Danmark. In 2000, in contrast, there were 221!

Numbers have been dwindling since 2017 – with around 10 robberies every year since then.

“It is nothing short of fantastic. You cannot appreciate the extreme strain on the affected employees every time it happens,” commented Finansforbundet deputy chair Steen Lund Olsen.

“You can’t even begin to understand the extent if it hasn’t happened to you.”

An absolute dearth of targets
Danske Bank stopped providing cashiers at its branches in Aalborg, Odense and Rønne in April, taking the nationwide total down to two.

Meanwhile, the likes of Nordea, Jyske Bank, Sydbank, Nykredit, Arbejdernes Landsbank and Spar Nord have all discontinued theirs.

It was bad enough when retail wised up to the vulnerability of their late-night outlets and banned cash transactions from 22:00 to 05:00 every day, but now the banking industry has well and truly killed off all possibilities for robbers in Denmark.

Fourth bird flu outbreak since October
A large outbreak of H5N1 bird flu has been detected in Ørum in Jutland just west of Randers, confirms Fødevarestyrelsen, the veterinary and food administration. An entire herd of 50,000 chickens will be culled later this week, confirmed Fødevarestyrelsen section leader Lotte Brink. It followed the euthanisation of 36,000 turkeys on Lolland shortly before Christmas and takes the number of bird flu-related culls to four since October.

Wildfire case should be concluded today
Denmark does not have many wildfires, so it was somewhat surprising when one managed to destroy 400 hectares in Randbøl in South Jutland in 2018. It took 120 firefighters three days to extinguish the fire. Today, the former manager of a fire station in nearby Egtved will appear in court accused of lighting 89 fires between 2018 and 2022. It is expected the 51-year-old, who was arrested on May 9 last year after 32 counts of arson over the preceding two months, will plead guilty and be sentenced today.

Legal again to keep and breed mink
It is again legal to keep mink following the January 1 cessation of a ban that had run since November 2020. So far, only a small number of former breeders have indicated they will resume activities. A cull in November 2020 killed 17 million mink. At that time there were an estimated 2,000 mink farms in Denmark, employing around 6,000 people and producing 14 million pelts a year.

Companies now required to sort waste like households
Companies are now required to sort their waste into nine different categories – in a similar fashion to the way the majority of households are required to do so. A series of campaigns conducted last year by Miljøstyrelsen, the environmental protection agency, has been encouraging companies to start making preparations for the switchover. The nine different categories are: paper, cardboard, glass, metal, plastic, food and drink cartons, eco waste (in the green bags), hazardous waste, and residual waste.

Deadline expires to sell off recently taxed nicotine products
New Year’s Day was the deadline by which retailers were required to sell off smoking-related products acquired before new taxes were introduced to bring them into line with most other tobacco products. For example, all products that contain nicotine are now subject to the tax, such as smokeless tobacco. The retailers are now only allowed to sell products bearing a stamp that verifies they have been taxed, or risk incurring a large fine.

Shakeup for pension laws
Several changes made to pension laws were enforced on January 1. Firstly, after gaining parliamentary approval in January 2022, OAPs will no longer risk losing part of their pension should their partners still work. Secondly, the ceiling on how much can be annually added to pension savings has been raised: from 5,500 to 8,800 kroner for most people under the age of 60. However, once somebody enters their 60s, they can now pay in 56,900 kroner annually – up from 54,200 kroner previously.

Top film of 2022 confirmed, and it’s a familiar name
‘Top Gun: Maverick’ was the most watched film at Danish cinemas in 2022, selling 791,102 tickets. However, it will probably not end up being the most watched 2022 film, as second-placed ‘Avatar 2: The Way of Water’ has already sold 480,544 tickets since being released in mid-December. In total, 10,224,124 tickets were sold in 2022 – considerably more than in the corona-struck years of 2020 and 2021. Danish films accounted for 30 percent of ticket sales, with children’s film ‘Bamse’, the third most popular of 2022, leading the way with 479,860 ticket sales.

Queen offers condolences following passing of former Pope
It took place too late for Queen Margrethe to mention it in her speech on December 31, but the monarch has reached out to Pope Francis to pass on her commiserations following the death of his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, in the early hours of New Year’s Eve. “Please accept my heartfelt condolences after the Pope’s passing. We will remember him as an honored theologian and lifelong servant of the Roman Catholic Church,” she wrote. Benedict was Pope from 2005 to 2013, at which point he stood down citing poor health. 

Contest to find official cake for the Opera House
This coming Sunday will bring the news many fans of the arts have anxiously been waiting for: the winner of a competition to design an official cake for the Opera House in Copenhagen. Det Kongelige Teater, in collaboration with Almanak restaurant, are behind the contest to find a winner, which will be revealed on January 8.