Denmark’s Top Trading Partners

Denmark's flag

by FlagPictures.org

A Scandinavian country in northern Europe, Denmark is located south of fellow Nordic nations Sweden and Norway and is bordered to its south by Europe’s largest economic power Germany.

Denmark shipped US$102.5 billion worth of products around the globe in 2017. That figure represents roughly 0.6% of overall global exports estimated at $15.952 trillion one year earlier in 2016.

From a continental perspective, almost three-quarters (74.1%) of Danish exports by value were delivered to other European countries. Another 12.7% were sold to Asian importers with 6% going to North America.

Smaller percentages were delivered to Africa (1.5%) and Latin America excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean (1.3%).

Denmark’s Top Trading Partners

Top 15

Below is a list showcasing 15 of Denmark’s top trading partners, countries that imported the most Danish shipments by dollar value during 2017. Also shown is each import country’s percentage of total Danish exports.

  1. Germany: US$17.2 billion (16.8% of total Danish exports)
  2. Sweden: $12.6 billion (12.2%)
  3. United Kingdom: $9 billion (8.7%)
  4. Norway: $6.5 billion (6.3%)
  5. United States: $5.1 billion (4.9%)
  6. Netherlands: $4.6 billion (4.5%)
  7. France: $3.8 billion (3.7%)
  8. China: $3.8 billion (3.7%)
  9. Poland: $3.3 billion (3.2%)
  10. Italy: $2.7 billion (2.6%)
  11. Finland: $2.4 billion (2.3%)
  12. Spain: $2.3 billion (2.2%)
  13. Belgium: $1.9 billion (1.9%)
  14. Japan: $1.7 billion (1.6%)
  15. Australia: $1.2 billion (1.2%)

Over three-quarters (76%) of Danish exports in 2017 were delivered to the above 15 trade partners.

UK led all top importers increasing its purchases from Denmark by 58.5% from 2016 to 2017.

The second-fastest growing importer from Denmark was France (up 33.5%) trailed by Belgium (up 33.1%) and Australia (up 28.8%).

Deficits

As defined by Investopedia, a country whose total value of all imported goods is higher than its value of all exports is said to have a negative trade balance or deficit.

It would be unrealistic for any exporting nation to expect across-the-board positive trade balances with all its importing partners. Similarly, that export country doesn’t necessarily post a negative trade balance with each individual partner with which it exchanges exports and imports.

Denmark incurred the highest trade deficits with the following countries:

  1. Netherlands: US-$3.2 billion (country-specific trade deficit in 2017)
  2. Poland: -$879.7 million
  3. Russia: -$830.1 million
  4. Italy: -$933.3 million
  5. Germany: -$4.8 billion
  6. Czech Republic: -$964.2 million
  7. China: -$3.2 billion
  8. Bangladesh: -$544.8 million
  9. Belgium: -$1.2 billion
  10. South Korea: -$617.1 million

Denmark went from a $304.1 million surplus trading with South Korea during 2016 to -$617.1 million in black ink for 2017. Among other trading partners that cause the greatest negative trade balances, Danish deficits with the Netherlands (up 26.9%), Poland (up 22.4%), Russia (up 21.4%) and Italy (up 19.8%) grew at the fastest pace year over year.

These cashflow deficiencies clearly indicate Denmark’s competitive disadvantages with the above countries, but also represent key opportunities for Denmark to develop country-specific strategies to strengthen its overall position in international trade.

Surpluses

Overall Denmark posted a $9.6-billion trade surplus for 2017, up by 3.7% from the $9.6-billion positive balance exchanging exports and imports during 2016.

Based on Investopedia’s definition of net importer, a country whose total value of all imported goods is lower than its value of all exports is said to have a positive trade balance or surplus.

Denmark incurred the highest trade surpluses with the following countries:

  1. United Kingdom: US$4.1 billion (country-specific trade surplus in 2017)
  2. United States: $2.1 billion
  3. Japan: $1.1 billion
  4. Finland: $859.5 million
  5. Australia: $827.8 million
  6. Spain: $498.8 million
  7. Saudi Arabia: $492.0 million
  8. Hong Kong: $475.8 million
  9. France: $457.1 million
  10. United Arab Emirates: $396.5 million

Among Denmark’s trading partners that generate the greatest positive trade balances, Danish surpluses with France (up 101.8%), United Kingdom (up 93.8%) and Hong Kong (up 21.3%) grew at the fastest pace from 2016 to 2017.

These positive cashflow streams clearly indicate Denmark’s competitive advantages with the above countries, but also represent key opportunities for Denmark to develop country-specific strategies to optimize its overall position in international trade.

Companies

Companies Servicing Danish Trading Partners

Fourteen Danish corporations rank among Forbes Global 2000. Below is a sample of the major Danish companies that Forbes included:

  • A.P. Moller-Maersk Group (transportation, energy)
  • Carlsberg (beverages)
  • Coloplast (medical equipment, supplies)
  • DSV (transportation, logistics)
  • Novo Nordisk (pharmaceuticals)
  • Novozymes (biotechs)
  • TDC (telecommunications services)
  • Vestas Wind Systems (electrical equipment)

Wikipedia also lists exporters from Denmark. Selected examples are shown below:

  • Arla Foods (dairy products)
  • House of Amber (jewelry)
  • Kopenhagen Fur (fur clothing, accessories)
  • Lego Group (toys)
  • Pharma Nord (pharmaceuticals)
  • Royal Copenhagen (porcelain)
  • Tuborg (brewery)


 
See also Denmark’s Top 10 Exports

Research Sources:
The World Factbook, Field Listing: Imports – Commodities, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on March 27, 2018

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, www.intracen.org/marketanalysis. Accessed on March 27, 2018

Investopedia, Net Importer Definition. Accessed on March 27, 2018
Wikipedia, List of Companies of Denmark. Accessed on March 27, 2018

Forbes 2015 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on March 27, 2018