AmCham Kicks off the New Year with Margrethe Vestager
From left: Kim Østrup, Ambassador Fulton, Minister Vestager, Stephen Brugger
Great networking opportunities at Rydhave
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On January 26, AmCham Denmark Patron Members gathered at Rydhave, the home of U.S. Ambassador Laurie S. Fulton, for AmCham’s annual New Year’s Reception. This year’s guest of honor was Danish Minister for Economics and the Interior, Margrethe Vestager, who is a key player in the recently formed SRSF government.
Ahead of the reception, Minister Vestager joined the AmCham board of directors for a roundtable discussion focusing on competitiveness and international investments. The informal discussions touched on several key issues, including Denmark’s challenges with low labor productivity growth and high cost of doing business; the important role that international companies play in the Danish economy; the need for Denmark to create a National Talent Strategy; and the great potential for Healthcare companies to contribute to a healthy workforce and increased productivity.
Minister Vestager then joined Ambassador Fulton in greeting guests as they arrived for this highly anticipated evening reception. The more than 90 business leaders attending this annual New year’s event and were treated to an array of creative hors d'oeuvres courtesy of Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers, and fine American wines from the Embassy’s Diplomat Restaurant.
AmCham’s Executive Director Stephen Brugger kicked off the reception program by gathering guests in Rydhave’s central hall and thanking Ambassador Fulton for generously opening up her home to this great AmCham tradition.
In her warm, personal remarks, Ambassador Fulton welcomed AmCham members and introduced Minister Vestager, highlighting the important role of women in global affairs. She told the audience about a recent meeting in Copenhagen with former U.S. Secretary of State Madeline Albright, who talked about having met some “great female party leaders” in Denmark when she was visiting in the past, “who are now running the country!”.
Minister Vestager thanked Ambassador Fulton and AmCham for the opportunity to meet with international business leaders in such a relaxed setting and expanded on the importance of improving Danish productivity in order to compete with other countries. We need to work on promoting growth, by working on services, on pushing the digital single market, and on promoting trade by enabling companies to move freely over borders.
AmCham’s Chairman Kim Østrup rounded out the speeches by thanking Minister Vestager for her participation and proactive outreach to the AmCham members, reminding the Minister of the key role that multinational companies play in the Danish economy. Following the speeches, guests resumed their networking and had an opportunity to engage personally with Minister Vestager.