The Danish government appears to be in the mood to selectively tighten immigration rules following an Integration Ministry report that restrictions imposed since 2001 have saved public coffers some DKK 5.1 billion each year.
The report shows that non-western immigrants and their descendants cost the Danish state some DKK 15.7 billion each year while western immigrants and descendants contribute some DKK 2.2 billion to public coffers each year.
“Now that we can see that it does matter who comes into the country, I have no scruples in further restricting those who one can suspect will be a burden on Denmark. On the other hand I am happy to let more of those in who obviously can and will contribute to improving the Danish economy,” Integration Minister Søren Pind tells Jyllands-Posten.
Danish People’s Party satisfied
The Danish People’s Party, which has been behind most of the restrictions imposed by the government in its nine years as a loyal support party, is happy with the new report.
“We now have it black on white that restrictions pay off. We have saved the public coffers some DKK 5.1 billion each year,” DPP Finance Spokesman Kristian Thulesen Dahl tells Jyllands-Posten. The party can be expected to use the results of the report in its on-going negotiations with the government on its 2020 Plan.
The Social Liberals, on the other hand, are appalled at the prospect of sorting foreigners, saying the idea is undignified, discriminatory and deplorable.
“What is happening in Denmark? A certain group of people is being denounced and being blamed for our deficit. Being made into whipping boys. We might just as well have asked how much early retirees cost and why they are not on the labour market,” says former Social Liberal leader and the party’s Integration Spokeswoman Marianne Jelved.
Jelved adds that at companies such as ISS some 50 per cent of employees are non-western immigrants taking jobs that Danes don’t want.
Asked whether it is not reasonable to take in immigrants who cost least, Jelved answers with a definitive ‘No’.
“Irrespective of the condition of a person who needs help, and irrespective of what it costs, the Good Samaritan also lives in Denmark. We cannot classify people depending on their value to the economy. That is degrading in a democracy that has a basic value of equality. We are experiencing a downslide here and it is extremely unfortunate for Denmark,” Jelved says.