The Government and Politics of the European Union

Seventh edition

by Neill Nugent


Population 5.5 m
Capital Copenhagen
Surface area 43,100 km2
Official Language Danish
Gross domestic product (GDP) (in euros) 152.2 bn
GDP as a % of EU-27, based on 2009 data 1.3
GDP per capita by purchasing power standards (indexed to EU average of 100) 118.7
Currency Danish krone (DKK)
Human development index (HDI), an index based on life expectancy, education and GDP (max. 1) 0.949
World rank in HDI 14/177
Key economic sectors Services (70.9); industry (26.5); agriculture (2.6)
Leading companies AP Moller-Maersk (a shipping company); Novo Nordisk A/S (healthcare); Den Danske Bank
Unemployment in July 2009 7.3% (source:
Main religious denominations (% of population) Evangelical-Lutheran (to which 82.1% of the population belonged in January 2008)
Political system A constitutional monarchy A single-chamber assembly, the Folketing, is elected every four years.
Electoral system Proportional representation (with constituency members being supplemented by those from a national list until proportionality has been achieved)
Current (March 2010) leaders Prime minister: Lars Lokke Rasmussen (b. 1964), since April 2009
Previous leaders: Prime ministers: Anders Fogh Rasmussen (2001-09); Poul Nyrup Rasmussen (1993-2001)
Joined the EU/EC 1973
Commissioner from country in Barroso II College of Commissioners, and portfolio Connie Hedegaard (Climate Action)
Number of MEPs 13/754
Turnout in 2009 EP elections (%) 59.5
Member of eurozone No

Except where a specific reference is inserted, the sources for this profile are either Neill Nugent’s book itself, or Barry Turner (ed.), The Statesman’s Yearbook Online, Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan. If your library subscribes, you can gain access at