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APRIL 2011

Words from the Ambassador

Obama's Green Ambitions

Green Ambitions bring a long Green Projects

Obama: Denmark “punches above its weight�

Increased Danish-American anti-piracy cooperation Command visits three major companies in the American defense industry Pushing the Life Sciences and Healthcare Agenda

State of the US economy

Establishing a Food & Agro Network in the U.S.

The past two months have been very eventful. In the Middle East we have seen dramatic turmoil and historic changes that few had foreseen, and which will have a fundamental impact on the opportunities for long-term stability, democratization, and economic development in the Middle East. We have seen two largely peaceful revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia, where long-time dictators have been removed from office. The two countries now are on track with transitions we hope will produce genuine democracies and provide economic prosperity and greater opportunity for their populations. In stark contrast, we see the deeply worrisome situation in Libya where Colonel Gaddafi is clinging on to power, while he is attacking his own population. Together with the United States, France, UK, and other countries – including key Arab contributors - Denmark has taken a prominent role in the international efforts to protect the civilian population in Libya and end the conflict, so the legitimate demands by the Libyan population for political reforms are met. Closer to home, here at the embassy, there has also been hectic activity, not least with the Prime Minister’s visit and meeting with President Obama in the Oval Office on March 14. The pressing challenges in the Middle East and the international efforts in Afghanistan were at the top of the agenda at the meeting in the White House. But President Obama and Prime Minister Rasmussen also agreed to strengthen cooperation within anti-piracy measures, and the President also showed a keen interest in the Danish Energy Strategy 2050. You can read more about the Prime Minister’s very productive meeting with the President and the collaboration on counter-piracy inside this issue. After the meeting Obama concluded that “Denmark […] punches above its weight.” This is a clear recognition of the role that Denmark plays in internationally of the close friendship and long-term alliance between Denmark and the U.S. The Prime Minister’s visit provided excellent opportunities to showcase some of the Danish comparative strengths in green tech, which the Prime Minister highlighted both at a meeting with the Chairman and CEO of GreenTech Automotive Corp (GTA) Terence R. Mcauliffe and at a well-attended public event at the esteemed think-tank the Brookings Institution on the ambitious Danish Energy Strategy 2050 charting a course for a fossil-free economy. It is my clear ambition to build on this strong foundation for cooperation – politically and commercially - to the benefit of the American-Danish Business Council members. Peter Taksøe-Jensen

By Peter Taksøe Jensen, Denmark's ambassador to the United States of America.

The following article by Peter Taksøe Jensen, Denmark's ambassador to the United States of America was published in the Danish newspaper Dagbladet Børsen, March 28, 2011. For the purpose of this newsletter the article has been translated from Danish into English.

U.S. President, Barack Obama, revives his ambitions for green technology. This implies new opportunities for Danish companies.

cent series of hard-hitting events has sent Obama’s climate and energy policy down for the count. First, Obama’s comprehensive climate bill was sunk. Then the Republican gains at the mid-term elections, combined with the economic crisis, made the conditions for a green agenda even more difficult in the Congress. Many Republicans and some Democrats consider it a threat to the U.S. economy and assert that it harms the coal industry and the agricultural sector. For this reason, President Obama has been forced to downplay his green agenda.

However, much suggests that the President is reviving his green ambiAs Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmus- tions. In his recent State of the Union sen prepares to break up in the Oval address, President Obama presented a Office during his March visit to Wash- bold target of one million electric cars ington, DC, President Obama reveals on U.S. roads by 2015. Equally promissurprisingly detailed knowledge about ing was his budget for 2012, recomDenmark: “Tell us a bit more about the mending an increase in the approprianew Danish energy plan.” tions to the U.S. Department of Energy by 12 percent. If the President gets it his way more money will be earmarked The interest comes from a man for whom energy and climate has caused for research into green technology. many woes. Despite high ambitions at his accession to the presidency, a re-

It may seem politically daring, considering that the issues of economic recovery and unemployment are expected to be top priorities of the U.S. voters in next year’s election. President Obama’s insistence on a green agenda stems partly from his commitment to the climate issue and his desire to fight global warming. Moreover, the President hopes to create new jobs through several green initiatives. The objective is not only to make the U.S. greener and less dependent on fossil fuels, but also to create so-called green jobs by development of electric vehicles, batteries and smart power grids. The IT company IBM estimated in 2009 that if the U.S. government invested 10 billion dollars in intelligent power grids, the 'smart grid' alone would generate 477,000 jobs.

ment of smart grids, Denmark has pioneering technologies to offer. A smart grid can distribute energy more efficiently by shifting a proportion of the energy consumption into night hours when energy is cheaper. Charging of electric vehicles is a prime example.. And while electric cars might not sound like a big power consumer today, they can quickly become so if one million electric cars roll out on U.S. roads as Obama hopes.

In May, the American epicentre on green technology, Silicon Valley, will be introduced to Danish ' smart grid ' companies by our innovation center in Silicon Valley, 'Innovation Center Denmark’. By promoting Danish expertise across the Atlantic, we hope to facilitate an exchange of innovative ideas and concrete business agreements for Danish firms in the green Denmark is one of the leading nations technology sector. It will be interestwhen it comes to intelligent solutions ing to follow the green technology sector - on both sides of the Atlantic. within renewable energy and there/Peter Taksøe Jensen fore new business opportunities for Danish firms can be expected when a For more information, please contact Torsen big player like the U.S. shows a willJansen, ingness to invest. Within the develop-

Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen met during his stay in Washington with the owner of GreenTech Automotives (GTA) Terence McAuliffe.

GTA is a US-based company dedicated to developing and producing affordable, environment-friendly, and energy-efficient vehicles. GTA plans to launch sub-compact cars, compact cars, midsize cars, sports coupes, and SUVs, each line including several different models. Currently, GTA has finished four prototypes, and the lab tests have proven the efficiency performance of the prototypes reaching or surpassing the future types of standards in Europe and USA. GreenTech Automotives is in the process of planning their strategy for Europe and Denmark is in play as hub for the European activities. As a first step in this direction McAuliffe announced last year during his visit to Denmark his partnership with Bornholm in delivering electric vehicles.

“Of all European countries, Denmark is the country that offers the best opportunities. The interest in electric vehicles is high for these consumers, and we believe that we have the best technology, which brings benefits for all parties” explains Terry McAuliffe. During the one hour meeting at the Embassy of Denmark, The Danish Prime Minister and Mr. McAuliffe discussed partnership opportunities in Denmark as well as Denmark’s Energy Strategy 2050, which recently was launched as the world’s most ambitious clean energy strategy. The first MyCar from GTA will be launched later this year and is expected to sell at around 11,500-15,000 USD. For further information, please contact Josefine Urup W.,


The comment followed the 50 minutes conversation between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen in the White House, where Afghanistan, the Middle East, and the possibility of producing new jobs and technology for the future from new and alternative energy sources figured prominently on the agenda. The Danish troops’ efforts to help stabilizing Afghanistan have been praised by the administration, and Denmark’s new plan to facilitate transition to Afghan leadership was no exception. “We have discussed how 2011 is going to be a year of transition, and under Prime Minister Rasmussen’s leadership, he has been able to build a consensus within Denmark about how that transition would proceed,” Obama said in his remarks to the press after the meeting.



On Egypt, the discussions introduced a new American-Danish partnership on higher education, IT and job creation among young people in Egypt. Finally, the PM and President reaffirmed their good relationship on tackling piracy and counter-terrorism and agreed to continue to further strengthen the American-Danish cooperation on these issues.

In addition to the meeting in the White House, Prime Minister Rasmussen met with two prominent Congressmen; Speaker John Boehner and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer. At the think tank, Brookings, the Prime Minister gave a speech on the global energy agenda for the 21st century. Finally, his tight schedule also allowed for a working dinner with Middle East experts in Blair House and a working lunch in the Ambassador’s residence with economic experts on getting through the crisis: The challenge of consolidation and The Prime Minister and President Obama also had a wide-ranging discus- growth, nationally and internationally. sion about energy. Lars Løkke Rasmussen explained the new Danish road map for complete reliance on clean This is Lars Løkke Rasmussen’s first visit and alternative energy by 2050. Using to Washington as Prime Minister. Presiclimate change efforts as a means to dent Obama has visited Denmark and create growth and jobs is a high prior- had meetings with Prime Minister Rasity in both countries. mussen twice before the meeting in Washington. The first was during the More imminent topics also made their International Olympics Committee meetings in September, 2009, and the way to the agenda, in particular the situation in Libya. “We both share the second during the COP15 climate conference in Copenhagen in the Decemview that Mr. Qaddafi has lost legitiber, 2009. macy and he needs to leave,” Obama stated while Rasmussen stressed the importance of the international society For further information, please contact Louise Mariegaard, examining all options to protect the Libyan people.

Following talks between U.S. President Barack Obama and Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, a strengthened cooperation within anti-piracy measures was decided.

Both the U.S. and Danish governments have made clear the increasing need to engage the challenge of piracy on the basis of a comprehensive and ambitious strategy, that includes a range of economic, legal, political and military options. Denmark ranks among the world’s biggest shipping nations. When measured by value, Danish owners and operators transport approx. 10 % of the world’s seaborne trade. The Danish embassy has already begun further discussions with the U.S. Administration on the piracy scourge and will continue to pursue solutions on the basis of strong and continuous international efforts. Director-General Andreas Nordseth meets with Danish Maritime Network in the US. Director-General of the Danish Maritime Authority Andreas Nordseth will discuss issues facing Danish shipping companies in the U.S. when he meets members of the Danish Maritime Network during his visit to Washington, D.C. on 12 April 2011. In his capacity as Chairman of the Consultative Shipping Group of 18 maritime nations Mr. Nordseth will also hold talks with his counterparts in the U.S. Administration, including U.S. MARAD, U.S. Coast Guard, the FMC and other key stakeholders.

For further information, please contact Maritime Advisor Henrik Juhl Madsen,

In February, the Commander of Tactical Air Command, Major General Henrik R. Dam, visited Lockheed Martin, L-3 Link Simulation & Training and Therma North America.

As part of his trip to the US. Major General Dam, along with Ambassador Peter Taksoe-Jensen, also went to the Pentagon to meet with Ms. Heidi Grant, Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force, International Affairs, as well as General Philip Breedlove, the Vice Chief of Staff of the US Air Force.

Lockheed As part of the Danish participation in the Joint Strike Fighter Project, Major General Henrik Dam, accompanied by Ambassador Peter Taksoe-Jensen and the Danish Defense Attaché, Brigadier General Jørgen Jacobsen, went to the main manufacturing site of Lockheed Martin fighter jet production in Fort Worth, Texas. Here they were greeted by the General Manager of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Program Integration, Charles T. Burbage, who gave them a tour of the facilities and briefed the Danish delegation on the F-35 project. Major General Henrik Dam also had the chance to visit Lockheed Martin’s Center for Innovation –

known as the “Lighthouse”. At this facility the Danish representatives were introduced to some of the latest advances in aerospace technology.

L-3 Link Simulation & Training and Therma North America Major General Henrik Dam also visited L-3 Link Simulation & Training, a leading technology company within communication and other electronic systems. Leonard Genna, President of L-3 Link Simulation & Training, greeted Major General Henrik Dam who got a chance to view the F-16 flight simulators, which the Danish Air Force is in the process of acquiring. Therma North America, the North American branch of the Danish Defense contractor also got a visit by Major General Henrik Dam. Here he was welcomed by Jim Brandt, the President and CEO. Major General Henrik Dam was briefed on the general products and developments in the field of radar and communication systems.

Fingers crossed. The US economy is back on track and is slowly moving in the right direction.

FED’s projection of real GDP growth is between 3.4 and 3.9 percent for 2011. This increase in economic activity is expected to further accelerate in the coming years. The projection is more positive than earlier projections, which is explained by better than expected numbers on consumer spending, business investment and net export. The Federal bank in Chicago recently disclosed its National Activity Index for February. The index is a weighted average of 85 indicators that meas-

ures economic activity. The Three-Month moving average increased to 0.11 in February from 0.05 in January. A positive number indicates that the economy is expanding above its historical trend. The National Activity Index is divided into 4 categories covering different aspects of the economy. The only category that contributed negatively to the index in February was the combined housing and consumer spending category, mainly due to a housing

market still struggling. This category crease in consumer confidence of 5.6 decreased to -0.45 down from -0.39 in point, rising from 64.8 (1985=100) in January. January to 70.4 in February. The latest figures on consumer spending from Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) showed an increase in personal consumer expenditures in the fourth quarter of 2010. Consumer expenditures increased with 4.0 % from the preceding quarter.

Overall the US economy is continuing on a path of recovery with many indicators giving rise to expectations of sustained and accelerated growth. Employment and housing remain weak, however, and the need for structural reforms becomes increasingly pertinent for the long term One thing that is often said to affect strength of the US economy. private consumption is consumer confidence. The Conference Board’s most For further information, please conidarecent consumer confidence survey tact Ida Heimann Larsen, showed positive numbers and an in-

Ambassador Peter Taksoe-Jensen and Healthcare Counselor Joakim Steen Mikkelsen took a journey to Denmark to follow up on US initiatives and connect Danish companies to the Embassy’s strong network of health care innovators, policymakers and thought leaders.

Visiting the Danish Ministry of Interior and Health, Medico Innovation, Medicon Valley Alliance and a number of life sciences companies, the aim was to identify and organize activities reflecting Danish life sciences strongholds. Focus was on innovation, investments and export promotion, healthcare policy and framework conditions, and how Danish organizations could collaborate to increase their US footprint and value -generation. Specifically Health-IT initiatives, access to capital, regulatory issues and government affairs was high on the agenda, but the ‘Sund Vaekst” (Healthy Growth) agenda by the Ministry of Interior and Health and bi-national collaboration in key cluster was discussed, and will be further developed on a forthcoming visit by the Minister of Interior and Health. Ambassador Taksoe-Jensen concluded the Denmark trip by addressing the DABF Annual Meeting and conference ‘Inspiration for Success in the US’ by offering an overview of the political and economic framework conditions in

the US, it’s potential impact on Danish companies doing business or entering the market, as well as a number of case stories of what to do and not to do operating in the US. To ensure continued dialogue and access to key stakeholders, Healthcare Counselor Joakim Steen Mikkelsen will address US-Danish Innovation, Investment and Export initiatives at the upcoming Health Evolution Partners Innovation Network (HEPIN) Leadership Summit 2011. At HEPIN Denmark have the opportunity to address the US’ top health care CEOs, Innovation and Growth Officers, entrepreneurs, prominent private investors, policy makers and other thought leaders. The Summit will probe the environmental forces driving change, showcase the latest healthcare innovators, explore the conditions for success, share success stories and consider ways that health care executives can integrate innovation into every aspect of developing organizations.

the passage and implementation of health reform and many other major shifts in the health care marketplace, every stakeholder needs to accelerate the rate of experimentation, adaptation and evaluation of new technologies and service models. Denmark will participate in discussions and debates explore major shifts in the health care landscape and their impact on major industry sectors as well as the 2012 Presidential elec-

tion, evolution of risk and the players who will manage it, the health care consumer and the evolving role of personalization and retailers, increasing globalization of the business of health care. For more information, please contact Joakim Steen Mikkelsen (

The Embassy of Denmark in Washington has taken the initiative to establish a Food & Agro Network in the US and has contacted the more than 24 Danish companies in this sector in the US.

Embassy’s contacts to American authorities and inroads to major partners in the market the committee will be in a unique position to enhance business opportunities and create network synergies. Already this year the Embassy is planning a number of activities within the framework of ADBC focusing on food & agro promotion a.o. participation in exclusive events during the visit to the The business challenges in the food US by HM the Queen and the Prince and agro sector have become obvious Consort 5.-10th of June ( Washington and made a closer dialogue necessary and New York) and a Food Safety semiwhich is the background for promoting nar on Maj 10th in the Embassy in conthe Food & Agro Network. One of the nection with a Food Safety arrangedriving forces behind the idea is the ment in the World Bank. – Please American-Danish Business Council (ADBC) which promotes Danish compa- contact the Embassy if you nies in the US and American companies want to attend. in Denmark. ADBC is engaged in a range of activities aiming at obtaining an even more thriving American-Danish market place with increased trade and investment. With the presence in the US of so many Danish players within the area of Food & Agro, we believe that the establishment of a Food & Agro Network committee would be of great value to participating companies and accommodate the Embassy’s additional food related activities. By using the Danish

Furthermore, we will on a continuous basis make ad hoc events when possible as well as promote Danish food during our annual Creative Christmas Reception in December in the residence.

At the Embassy we look forward to see how the Food & Agro Network will involve in the future. For further information please contact Steen Steensen:

The i6 Green Challenge is an exciting competition, aiming to reward ground-breaking ideas that will generate job-creation and economic growth.

Economic Development Administration (EDA) is along with 7 other federal agencies and departments behind the 12 million dollar competition promoting clean energy innovation and economic growth. EDA will award up to $1 million to at least one winning team in each of the agency’s six regions. The other participating agencies may award an additional 6.3 million dollars for innovative ideas that can drive technology commercialization and entrepreneurship in their region.

Thus, this initiative is just one of many initiatives in the Obama administration’s plan to out innovate the rest of the world and it aims not only to spur creative ideas, but also to create new tools to enhance economic and environmental sustainability. Danish companies and their subsidiaries in the US already have an upper hand - clean energy and energy efficiency have for decades now been a top priority in Denmark. In fact today this industry accounts for almost 13 % of Danish exports.

Clean tech is one of this Administra- The i6 challenge is intended to foster tion’s top priorities. Obama recently enduring collaborations and partnerstated in his state of the union speech: ships between stakeholders such as universities, local government, nonprofit and for-profit organizations.

“This is our generation's Sputnik moment…. We’ll invest in biomedical research, information technology, and especially clean energy technology - an investment that will strengthen our security, protect our planet, and create countless new jobs for our people."

The winners are expected to be announced in September 2011. So get creative and innovative and you might win the big price.

If interested find more information at:

Last week the Danish biotechnology company Novo Nordisk hosted a Diabetes Portfolio Advisory Board meeting at the Embassy of Denmark.

Ambassador Peter Taksøe-Jensen was pleased to welcome the delegation from Novo Nordisk, which included Novo Nordisk senior management, among others Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen, Chief Scientific Officer, and Alan Moses, Chief Medical Officer, as well as a number of key health care specialists. Novo Nordisk’s U.S. significance is substantial and the company was recently profiled in Forbes Magazine under the title ‘Novo Nordisk’s Medical Miracle’ describing the company’s strong commitment to diabetes care and disease management.

penses to furnish and equip this research center, which will by 2011 employ approx. 100 researchers. Product wise, Novo Nordisk is market leader in the US with 42% of the entire insulin market and 34% of the market for modern insulin analogs, both measured by volume. Novo Nordisk has educated 70,000 health professionals through the National Changing Diabetes Program in North America.

The Trade Council at the Danish Embassy works to promote investments In the United States Novo Nordisk em- and exports within health care industriploy more than 3,800 people. Through- es, technology, and innovation. Click out its entire group, employee growth here to read more about the Trade has increased 655% since 2000. In the Council at the Danish Embassy. same time period, turnover in the U.S. has grown from $0.5 billion to more than $3.5 billion. In the photo: Ambassador Peter Taksøe -Jensen and Chief Scientific Officer Furthermore, Novo Nordisk made Mads Krogssgaard. some major capital investments in 2009 by initiating the Inflammation Research Center in Seattle Washington. For further information, please contact During 2009 the company invested ap- Josefine Urup Wolff, proximately $10M U.S. in capital ex-

The Danish School offers students from the age of 4 years old to adulthood a three -hour Saturday program, divided into four classes, from September to May ever year. The Danish School of Washington, DC, is currently concluding its fifth successful year of operation.

The core of the school is providing Danish children born outside of Denmark with an opportunity to keep their Danish citizenship, when they will turn 22 and otherwise risk losing it. The School gives grounds for prevalence of the dual citizenship, thus it provides the documentation of “special bounding” to Denmark, which is needed in the application to the integration ministry.

organization or company in the US U.S. families or individuals, who wish to work, study or live in Denmark US residents who wish to learn Danish for a variety of reasons.

The school’s objective is to assist parents with the challenge of maintaining a connection to Danish culture The school is satisfying the need for and traditions while living in the U.S. Danish language instruction in the The School also strengthening the following segments: student’s communication skills in understanding, speaking, reading and  Children with a right to Danish writing the language. The curriculum citizenship who have not lived has been developed by Danish resiin Denmark and therefore need dent educators who conduct the clasto provide proof of a connecses, based on guidelines from the Dation to Denmark in order to nish education systems. sustain the right. The School reinforces the cultural he Mixed or Danish Families with ritage by putting Danish treating phichildren, wanting to return to losophy and method into practice, as well as providing the children with the Denmark opportunity to celebrate the Danish  Families of Danish descent festive such as Fastelavn, Lucia, Påske wanting to provide their and Jul as the custom is in Denmark. children with cultural backing of their heritage Because of the size of the Danish  Partners or spouses to Danes community in the area and given th  People of non-Danish origins fact that well-educated Danish teawishing to work for a Danish chers

are present in the community, the school could potentially offer the qualifying examination in Danish (official school diploma for upper school) if paired with a well-rounded curriculum. Seen globally, Washington, DC, has one of the highest concentrations (in line with New York) of welleducated Danes living abroad. Therefore, it must be our realistic vision to strive to become the preeminent Danish school outside Europe and to expand the school offering with intensive language classes for children and adults. The Danish School of Washington, D.C. is a not for profit organization (IRS 501(c)(3), sustained through tuition fees and donations from corporations and benefactors. It is a parent membership organization with a parent board of directors. We also wish to expand the children’s classes creating room for students from families wishing to apply for financial support. For further information, donations or possible collaboration, please contact the board or principal directly at or or visit us at We are looking forward to hearing from you.

April, date TBC:

Food & Agriculture in Corporation with the World Bank Learning from Danish Food Standards th April 11 : Danish Maritime Network Meeting Meet with Director General of the Danish Maritime Authority Mr. Andreas Nordseth th May 7 , 10 AM - 4PM EU Open House at the Danish Embassy May, date TBC: Defense discusses energy with Thisted How to Apply the Danish Model Talks between US defense and Danish Municipalities within Energy Efficiency June 7-12th June 27th:

The Royal Danish Ballet at the Kennedy Center Defense and Health & Life Science Danish US Event in connection with the Bio Conference in Washington

Embassy of Denmark, 3200 Whitehaven St., NW Denmark is all about cool, healthy, and sustainable living. This year the Embassy is working with Novo Nordisk to promote healthy lifestyle and physical activity and will host a range of fun, exciting, and educational activities that focus on people’s wellbeing. Visitors are also invited for an exclusive tour of the Ambassador’s residence. Do not miss a unique opportunity to visit the Embassy and to bring your family to experience a day of fun and exciting activities. Read more about the EU Open House at

The Royal Danish Ballet continues to command attention on the world stage with new productions of Bournonville's signature and enduring masterpiece Napoli and his A Folk Tale, both re-staged by new Artistic Director Nikolaj Hübbe. Do not miss the unique opportunity to experience the Royal Ballet’s performances at the Kennedy Center in June.

Tickets available at the Kennedy Center’s website: fuseaction=showEvent&event=BLBSH Tickets: $29.00 - $99.00


Internationalization Means Business – and Vice Versa The American-Danish Business Council promotes Danish companies in the US, and American companies in Denmark. It is engaged in a range of activities aiming at obtaining an even more thriving American-Danish market place with increased trade and investment. The Council has 59 Danish and American companies as members. A number of sector-specific committees are being formed, including on Health & Life Science, Defense, Finance, Maritime, Food & Agriculture and Energy. By using the Danish Embassy's contacts and access to American as well as to Danish Authorities, the committees work to enhance business opportunities and to create network synergies and corporation. To read about membership benefits, please visit our homepage,, or contact Josefine Urup Wolff,

ADBC Newsletter April 2011  

Keeping with tradition, ADBC presents its members and other stakeholders with the latest news within its sector focuses.