Borgen: Benefit Tourism


Fear of welfare tourism and a social union dominate European Parliamentary election debates to be held in May. Denmark is no exception. Yesterday I gave a talk at a EU conference at the Danish Parliament, Borgen, entitled “Fear, facts and future of welfare tourism”  (Sådan er virkeligheden! Frygt, fakta og fremtid for velfærdsturisme). Birgitte Nyborg was not present, but today her real life equivalent, PM Helle Thorning-Schmidt, decided to ask the European Commission whether exported child family benefit can be indexed with the level of prices in the country where the children resides. Reluctantly, Thorning Schmidt is following in the footsteps of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British PM David Cameron that earlier have also announced measures to curb unintended use of benefits.