The government once again finds itself on a collision course with large sections of Danish business life. According to the Confederation of Danish Industry (DI), Minister for Integration Birthe Rønn Hornbech has – “like a thief in the night” – tightened the rules for the Danish Green Card scheme, rendering it useless, writes daily newspaper Jyllands-Posten.
Before August 1st, people in possession of a Green Card were allowed to reside and work in Denmark for a period of up to three years. Now, that period has been sliced in half, to 18 months. And the cuts have prompted outrage in Danish business life.
– This change has been carried out like a thief in the night, and it is entirely out of tune with the goal that we must be able to attract qualified foreign labour. It runs completely against the grain of the government’s declared goal of creating a framework for growth, says consultant Claus Andersen from the Confederation of Danish Industry.
It is the third time in recent months that the government and Danish business life have clashed.
First, the government implemented a Green Card fee. Then, last week when the government held their Forum for Growth, there was harsh criticism of the government’s lack of initiative. And now, the government is implementing further cuts to a scheme which the business sector regards as crucial to the future global struggle to attract highly qualified labour.
– We are disappointed by this step in the wrong direction, when we are constantly trying to improve the conditional framework for experts. We have had promising discussions with the Minister for Taxation regarding the expert taxation scheme. I think the various government ministries need to coordinate their initiatives a little better, head of Talent Attraction DK at wind turbine giant Vestas tells Jyllands-Posten.