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EU heads gather to launch Danish presidency

EU heads gather to launch Danish presidency
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Denmark’s Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt has welcomed EU leaders to Copenhagen for the official launch of the country’s six month EU presidency.

The Danish government has said cost-efficiency will be the hallmark of its EU stewardship with fewer gifts for dignitaries this time round.

But while some have dubbed it the ‘tap water’ presidency, the challenges facing Denmark and the EU, in one of bloc’s worst economic crises, appear huge. The non-euro member has promised to try to help draft a new fiscal responsibility pact and heal divisions following the UK’s attempt to block treaty change at last December’s EU summit.

“We are looking into the fiscal pact right now, all the 27/26 member states are doing that, and Denmark will take a decision once it is finished,” Denmark’s Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt said.

The seven-times holder of the EU’s rotating presidency has also promised to encourage growth in the EU, with an emphasis on green jobs and measures to boost eco-friendly technology.

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