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Denmark unveils plan for maritime sector growth

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Minister for Industry, Business and Growth Brian Mikkelsen

JANUARY 23, 2018 — The Danish maritime sector is one of the country’s most important export sectors and a major supplier of jobs. However, the industry faces tough competition in a world market undergoing rapid change as a consequence of changes to the global distribution of work, consumer behavior and digital and technological developments.

In response, the Danish Government has unveiled a plan for growth in the Danish Maritime Sector that positions the country to become a global maritime hub by 2025.

​The plan includes initiatives aimed at making Denmark a global frontrunner in terms of maritime autonomous technologies and maritime digitalization. It also aims to create more work-experience positions at sea and to increase the number of applicants admitted to training programs for masters and ship officers, as well as ensuring the development of an overall maritime marketing strategy in close cooperation with the industry.

“With the Plan for Growth in the Danish Maritime Sector, the Government has set the course for Denmark to become a global maritime power hub by 2025,” says Minister for Industry, Business and Growth Brian Mikkelsen. “Now, all forces in the Danish maritime sector must join forces, roll up their sleeves and get to work to make the vision behind the plan for growth into reality.”


The Plan for Growth includes 36 initiatives that focus on individual challenges as well as on more general framework conditions.

The plan is based on results already achieved through an industrial and entrepreneurial agreement reached in November 2017. This agreement involved an extension of the application of the DIS scheme (Danish International Register of Shipping) to seafarers on board offshore special ships, initial dialogue with the EU Commission about a scheme for maritime service engineers and the removal of the registration fee for merchant ships.

“Abolishing the fee for registration has removed a substantial factor when shipping companies choose where to register their ships,” says Mikkelsen. “The abolition will make DIS (Danish International Register of Ships) more attractive. I see the news that Maersk will register more ships under Danish flag as a clear sign of this.”


As part of the plan for growth, the government also aims develop a standard concept for island ferries. It says that the introduction of a standard ferry will support the Danish positions of strength in maritime energy efficiency and climate and environment solutions and thus support the maritime sector and export.


The scope of the plan for growth covers a wide spectrum of the maritime sector, and the initiatives will be implemented on an ongoing basis towards 2025 in cooperation with the industry, the two sides of industry and research and educational institutions. The ambition is that companies in the maritime sector can recruit employees with the right qualifications both now and in the future. More flexible work-experience jobs will be established and recruitment for master and ship officer programs will be increased.

“It is important that more young people see the opportunities of a future in the maritime businesses,” says Søren Pind, Minister of Education and Research. “Education of high quality and skilled young people is essential for the maritime sector to be an important part of the future growth of Denmark.”

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