Posted on August 10, 2005

Foreigners Flee Denmark

Copenhagen Post, Aug. 10

For the first time in 25 years, foreigners moving from the country outnumber new immigrants

Foreigners are finding Denmark a less attractive land to live in, new statistics suggest. For the first time in 25 years, foreigners moving from the country outnumbered new immigrants in the second quarter of the year.

National statistics bureau Statistics Denmark said 5,298 foreign citizens moved out of Denmark in the period, while only 4,983 moved in.

Most of the people who left Denmark were immigrants from western countries, national daily Jyllands-Posten reported.

The biggest increase was reported among US citizens holding residency permits in Denmark. Nearly 600 Americans moved out of the country in the second quarter of 2005, compared with only 200 in the same period last year.

The number of Somali immigrants fell for the tenth quarter in a row.

Radical liberal MP and spokesman on immigration issues Morten Østergaard, said the development was a result of Denmark’s strict line on immigration.

‘Not only are fewer getting in, but many are leaving Denmark as well. If Denmark is to attract foreign workers, changing the immigration policy is essential,’ he said.

The Danish People’s Party’s spokesman, Jesper Langballe, said the policy was need to restrict immigration from non-western countries.

‘But it’s regrettable to lose the Americans and Western Europeans, who can contribute a lot to our society. They’re not the ones creating trouble, but the Muslims,’ Langballe said.

Integration Minister Rikke Hvilshøj said she did not find the statistics surprising, given the government’s immigration policy.

The statistics revealed that the total number of immigrants and their descendants decreased between April and July, because fewer western citizens moved to the country. However, the number of immigrants and their descendants from non-western countries increased by 1,100 in the same period.