Read the complete write-up of Mette Frederiksen net worth, age, husband, children, height, family, parents, immigration, politics, party as well as other information you need to know.
Mette Frederiksen is a Danish politician who has been Prime Minister of Denmark since June 2019 and Leader of the Social Democrats since June 2015. The second woman to hold either office, she is also the youngest prime minister in Danish history. Besides a very brief career as a trade unionist (2000–2001), Frederiksen has never had any employment outside politics. She was first elected to the Folketing in the 2001 general election, representing Copenhagen County. After the Social Democrats won the 2011 general election, she was appointed Minister of Employment by Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt.
Frederiksen was promoted to Minister of Justice in 2014. After the Social Democrats’ narrow defeat in the 2015 general election, Thorning-Schmidt stood down, and Frederiksen won the subsequent leadership election to replace her, becoming Leader of the Opposition. Frederiksen led her party into the 2019 general election, which resulted in the bloc of left-wing and center-left parties (her Social Democrats, the Social Liberals, the Socialist People’s Party, the Red-Green Alliance, the Faroese Social Democratic Party, and Greenland’s Siumut and Inuit Ataqatigiit) winning a majority in the Folketing.
She was subsequently commissioned by Queen Margrethe II to lead negotiations to form a new government and was sworn in as prime minister on 27 June 2021. In December 2021, she became the longest-serving incumbent female head of government in the European Union.
Mette Frederiksen was born on November 19, 1977 (age 44 years) in the city of Aalborg, Denmark. Her father was a typographer and her mother was a teacher. As a teenager, she campaigned to preserve rain forests, protect whales and end apartheid. Frederiksen attended the Aalborghus Gymnasium. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Administration and Social Science from Aalborg University, and a master’s degree in African Studies from the University of Copenhagen.
Mette Frederiksen worked as a youth consultant for LO, The Danish Confederation of Trade Unions. She was elected as a member of parliament for Copenhagen County in the 2001 general election which saw the Social Democrats losing the first place and placing second for the first time since 1920. After her election, Frederiksen was named as her party’s spokesperson for culture, media and gender equality. In 2002, she received the Nina Bang Prize for showing political courage, enthusiasm and impact on social feeling.
Frederiksen received the Ting Prize in 2012 and has co-authored the books Epostler (2003) and From Fight to Culture (2004). After the 2005 general election loss, Frederiksen became her party’s spokesperson for social affairs. Following the election, she also served as the vice-chairperson of the parliamentary group of the Social Democrats. In the 2007 general election which saw the Social Democrats losing two more seats, Frederiksen obtained 27,077 votes, placing her in seventh place in the ranking of the ten Danish politicians with the most votes.
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After the 2011 general election which led to a Social Democrats government, Frederiksen served under Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt as Minister for Employment from 2011 to 2014 and Minister of Justice from 2014 until she succeeded her as party leader. As Minister of Employment, she headed for reforms of early retirement pensions, flex jobs and the employment system. Likewise, the controversial cash assistance reform meant lower cash benefits for the young unemployed and provided cohabiting mutual support, among other things.
Leader of the Social Democrats
Mette Frederiksen’s leadership started after the 2015 general election in which the Social Democrats returned to first place and gained three seats in the Folketing, the party has moved back to the left on economic issues while taking a conservative stance on immigration. The 2019 general election saw the Social Democrats gaining a further seat while support for the Danish People’s Party and the Liberal Alliance collapsed, costing Lars Løkke Rasmussen his majority. With the result beyond doubt on election night, Rasmussen conceded defeat.
Frederiksen was appointed Prime Minister on 27 June 2019, heading an exclusively Social Democratic minority government supported by the red bloc. Despite having run on an anti-immigration stance during the election, Frederiksen briefly shifted her stance on immigration by allowing more foreign labour and reversing government plans to hold foreign criminals offshore after winning government.
Frederiksen gained international attention in August 2019 when President of the United States Donald Trump cancelled a state visit to Denmark following her refusal to sell Greenland, an autonomous territory of the Kingdom of Denmark. On 15 August, The Wall Street Journal reported that Trump had discussed the possibility of buying Greenland with aides. Kim Kielsen, the Premier of Greenland, responded by saying that Greenland is not for sale. On 18 August, after the rumor was confirmed by the White House, Frederiksen echoed Kielsen’s comments, saying that “Greenland is not Danish. Greenland belongs to Greenland”, and called the discussion “absurd”. On 20 August, Trump cancelled the state visit, scheduled 2–3 September, with specific reference to Frederiksen’s refusal to discuss a possible sale.
On 3 January 2020, Iranian General Qasem Soleimani was assassinated by the United States, which considerably heightened the existing tensions between the two countries. Frederiksen called it “a really serious situation”. She avoided questions on whether the killing was right, instead of calling for de-escalation. In 2020, Frederiksen was labeled “Denmark’s most eurosceptic PM in a long time”, as she has often criticized the EU’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and their vaccine program. At the request of the United States, Frederiksen initiated diplomatic talks in early 2022 on the possible presence of American troops on Danish soil. Frederiksen expressed enthusiasm for the talks, stating that “We want a stronger American presence in Europe and in Denmark”.
Frederiksen has been leading the Danish Government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Denmark. In 2020, she issued an order to mink farmers to cull millions of these animals in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic; this decision later turned out to be unconstitutional. By 2021, she joined forces with Chancellor Sebastian Kurz of Austria and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel in setting up a joint research and development fund, and possibly production facilities for COVID-19 vaccines, to ensure they had long-term supplies for booster shots or to contend with virus mutations.
2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
Following the 2022 Russian invasion Ukraine, Mette Frederiksen’s government initiated political talks with the five main political parties of the Folketing (the Social Liberal Party, the Socialist People’s Party, Venstre and the Conservative People’s Party), and on 4 March 2022 presented the “National Compromise on Danish Security Policy”, in which a significant increase in Danish defence spending, an emergency allocation of DKK 7 billion for the Danish defence, a plan for independence from Russian gas, and a referendum on the Danish EU defence opt-out were presented. The country will gradually increase defense spending to 2% of GDP by 2033 (as agreed within NATO), which corresponds to an increase in annual defense spending of around 18 billion DKK ($2.65 billion).
Mette Frederiksen has stated a desire to be “Prime Minister of Children”, and in 2021, she presented a plan, called, “Law of Children”, in order to put the children at the front in social cases, including giving municipalities more resources to take children away from violent parents, and to give children more rights in divorce cases. In 2020, she also made a deal with the Socialist People’s Party, the Red-Green Alliance, and the Danish People’s Party, in order to give people who have worked for a long the ability to get early retirement. This was also one of Frederiksen’s main promises during the 2019 election campaign.
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Frederiksen is a vocal opponent of prostitution because she considers it violence against women. For many years, she has strongly advocated for the prohibition of the purchase of sex, as in Sweden, Norway, and Iceland. In 2002, she opened the debate on the abolition of prostitution and was behind the 2009 congressional decision that the Social Democrats would “work for a ban on the purchase of sexual acts”, saying that prostitution caused mental health damage to the prostitute.
Mette Frederiksen became increasingly skeptical of liberal mass immigration, as she believes it has had negative impacts on much of the population, a more pressing issue since at least 2001 after the 11 September attacks which intensified during the 2015 European migrant crisis. In a recent biography, Frederiksen stated: “For me, it is becoming increasingly clear that the price of unregulated globalization, mass immigration, and the free movement of labour is paid for by the lower classes.”
Under Frederiksen, the Social Democrats voted in favour of a law allowing Danish authorities to confiscate money, jewellery, and other valuable items from refugees crossing the border. The bill received harsh condemnation from the United Nations Human Right Council, and widespread comparisons between the plan and the treatment of Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe. The Social Democrats voted for a law banning the wearing of burqas and niqabs, while abstaining during a vote on a law on mandatory handshakes, irrespective of religious sentiment, at citizenship ceremonies and on a plan to house criminal asylum seekers on a bridgeless island on which they would have to stay at night.
Frederiksen also backed the right-wing populist Danish People’s Party in their paradigm shift push to make repatriation, rather than integration, the goal of asylum policy. She has called for a cap on non-Western immigrants, the expulsion of asylum seekers to a reception centre in North Africa, and forced 37-hours-per-week labour for immigrants in exchange for benefits. Frederiksen has referred to Islam as a “barrier to integration”, arguing that some Muslims “do not respect the Danish judicial system”, that some Muslim women refuse to work for religious reasons, and that Muslim girls are subject to “massive social control”, and has called for Muslim schools to be closed.
In April 2021, Mette Frederiksen announced that Denmark’s “ultimate goal” shall henceforth be one of “zero spontaneous asylum seekers”. Danish Integration Minister Mattias Tesfaye added that “no exceptions will be made” towards that goal. Danish Refugee Council’s Secretary General Charlotte Slente called the move “irresponsible”. The Danish state subsequently ceased the renewal of temporary residency permits to about 189 Syrian refugees, claiming that it is “now safe to return to Syria”.
Despite having adopted new migration policies than earlier social Democratic governments, she and her government has also been introducing several relaxations of the Danish immigration policies. Even though Mette Frederiksen and her government are against the idea of spontaneous asylum seekers, they are great supporters of the UN refugee quota system and have reintroduced Denmark’s participation in that system. Other relaxations include getting the children out of the infamous migration-center “Sjælsmark” and increasing social benefits for refugees.
In an interview with Kristeligt Dagblad, Frederiksen called for the “closure of all immigrant centres” and for the “resettlement of immigrants in North Africa”. These statements were strongly criticized by Morten Østergaard (secretary of the Danish Social Liberal Party – Radical Left) and Cristina Narbona (president of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party), who accused Frederiksen of xenophobia. However, her statements were praised by Sigmar Gabriel (former leader of the Social Democratic Party of Germany) in an op-ed for Handelsblatt.
In 2020 and 2021, her government was criticized for refusing to repatriate children with Danish citizenship from Syrian refugee camps, due to their parents allegedly having joined the Islamic State.
Mette Frederiksen’s government made international news with the agreement to reduce Denmark’s territorial emissions by 70% in 2030 compared to 1990, the decision to stop oil and gas exploration after 2050 (also driven by the fact that only one company applied for a lease in the latest auction), and the energy islands in the North Sea. Frederiksen publicly said: “I was a social democrat before I got green. And when I wake up in the morning, I am still a social democrat before I am green.”
More than a year after having set an ambitious reduction target for the decade, there are in March 2021 no concrete plans for dealing with the remaining two thirds of the needed reductions to achieve the Danish 2030 emission target. Green NGOs have largely viewed Frederiksen’s Minister of Climate Dan Jørgensen’s tenure negatively in 2020. Frederiksen’s government has described its climate action strategy as a “hockey stick”-model. This means it plans to await new technologies and falling costs and thus only achieve most reductions at the end of the decade – this strategy has been described by other political parties as a “Bjørn Lomborg” dream.
Despite pleas from the UNFCCC, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Danish Economic Councils and the Danish Council on Climate Change, Frederiksen’s government has postponed the implementation of a higher carbon pricing mechanism, even though Denmark was a pioneer with its adoption in 1992. The opposition to higher carbon taxes was positively received by associations representing the major emitting sectors such as the Confederation of Danish Industry and Danish Agriculture and Food Council.
As of March 2021, Denmark stands to have a much lower price on carbon than its neighbours in 2030, with consequences such as trucks from Germany waiting to refuel until they are in Denmark to benefit from the low diesel prices in Denmark. Denmark is also one of the four EU countries without carbon taxes on passenger flights. In fact, Frederiksen’s government had plans to guarantee domestic flights during the COVID-19 crisis by subsidizing domestic flights, a decision decried by green NGOs and the supporting parties Red-Green Alliance and the Socialist People’s Party. The decision was not implemented as the European Commission would not approve it due to regulations on state aid.
Frederiksen’s government entered a formal agreement with the cement manufacturer Aalborg Portland (Denmark’s largest carbon emitter standing for 4% of the national emissions) concluding that they did not have to reduce their annual emissions below their 1990 level of 1.54 million CO2 tons. Previously, Mette Frederiksen had said: “I will chain myself to Portland before anyone is allowed to close them”. Similarly, her government has been criticized for allowing state-owned companies to continue the build-out of fossil fuel infrastructure like a natural gas pipeline of 115 km, with an associated socio-economic cost of $113 million for Denmark.
In a formal answer to the Parliament, the Minister of Climate Dan Jørgensen confirmed that the gas pipeline would not reduce the carbon emissions in the short term nor add any jobs in Denmark. As stipulated in the Climate Act, the Danish Council on Climate Change has to make annual recommendations for and provide a status update on the Danish government’s climate efforts. In February 2021, the Danish Council on Climate Council does not find it likely that Frederiksen’s government will achieve the target of a 70% reduction of greenhouse gases by 2030.
The unemployment benefit case
On 14 March 2013, Ekstra Bladet announced that she and her ministry had failed to inform the Folketing about the correct figures regarding how many unemployment benefit recipients would drop out of the unemployment benefit system in 2013. According to Ekstra Bladet, on 5 December 2012, the Ministry of Employment had new figures for how many people were expected to lose the right to unemployment benefits on 1 January 2013 and the following six months. The number was 22,679 people and thus significantly higher than the 7-12,000 people that the government had announced. She was strongly criticized for this – and both the Unity List and the Danish People’s Party subsequently called her in consultation on the matter.
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The new unemployment benefit rules were adopted in 2010 by the VK government and the Danish People’s Party, and were to be fully implemented on 2 July 2012. The changes mean that the unemployment benefit period is shortened from 4 to 2 years. In the Finance Act agreement for 2012, it was agreed to extend the unemployment benefit period by up to half a year for all insured unemployed who exhausted the unemployment benefit entitlement in the second half of 2012. Therefore, it was not until 1 January 2013 that many began to lose their unemployment benefit entitlement.
At a press conference on 4 November 2020, Mette Frederiksen stated that the government had decided that all mink in Denmark should be killed due to the risk of infection with covid-19. Subsequently, it emerged that this order was illegal and by many is described as in violation of the Constitution. The government came up with changing explanations and several parties in the Folketing demanded an account of the mink case. The statement was published on 18 November 2020 and it emerged that 6 ministers had been warned on 1 October 2020 that the order was illegal. Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Mogens Jensen withdrew immediately. Mette Frederiksen has denied knowledge of the lack of legal basis. A commission of inquiry was also set up to investigate the case.
Mette Frederiksen is married to her longtime boyfriend Bo Tengberg, they had their wedding on July 15, 2020. Her second husband is a film director. They were married at the Magleby Church, an affiliate of the Church of Denmark on the island of Møn. In her previous marriage, Frederiksen has two children with her first husband Erik Harr, whom she separated from in 2014. However, in May 2010, it was revealed that Frederiksen’s daughter, along with the children of 2003 several other prominent Social Democrat politicians, was being educated at a private school.
Along with her colleagues, Frederiksen was accused of hypocrisy by the Danish press as her party had long seen the promotion of public education as a key policy. In 2005, Frederiksen had openly criticized parents who sent their children to private schools. Frederiksen responded to the criticism by saying that her opinion on private education had become more nuanced since her remarks in 2005 and that it would have been hypocritical of her to put her own political career ahead of her daughter’s best interest.
Mette Frederiksen net worth
How much is Mette Frederiksen worth? Mette Frederiksen net worth is estimated at around $4 million. Her main source of income is from her career as a politician. Frederiksen successful career has earned her some luxurious lifestyles and some fancy cars trips. She is one of the richest and influential politicians in Denmark. However, Frederiksen has argued that the perception of the Social Democrats adopting the Third Way and practicing centrist, neoliberal economics and supporting unrestricted globalization contributed to the party’s poor electoral performance in the early 21st century. Labeling economic foreign policies of Europe as too liberal, Frederiksen has criticized other social democratic parties for losing their voters’ trust by failing to prevent globalization from chipping away at labour rights, increasing inequality and exposing them to uncontrolled immigration.