Denmark's top apprentices and trainees to compete in Copenhagen in 2020

​Danish Championship in Skills: The country’s top apprentices will be found when the Danish Championships for builders are held in Copenhagen in 2020. Skilled workers are in short supply in the Danish labour market. Copenhagen hopes that this prestigious competition will inspire even more young people to become skilled tradesmen.

There’s high demand for plumbers and bricklayers to fix leaking taps or re-tile bathrooms. The same goes for social and health assistants, shop assistants and a number of skilled workers in industry. Hotels will be short of receptionists, and restaurants will lack chefs and waiters. There is a shortage of skilled workers in the Danish labour market and pressure on the sector is likely to continue to increase.   

Reversing this development

Figures from the Economic Council of Labour Movement confirm that, by 2025, there will be a shortage of 70,000 skilled workers. It is therefore crucial to reverse this development and ensure that more young people become aware of the many opportunities provided by vocational training and opt to take these subjects. 

Bella Center

For several years, Copenhagen has worked towards increasing awareness of vocational training programmes among the young people of the city. Next year, the City of Copenhagen, together with the Capital Region of Denmark and vocational colleges, will host the Danish Championships in Skills at Bella Center from the 16th to the 18th of January 2020.

300 young people to compete

The Danish Championships in Skills is an annual national competition for young people attending vocational programmes. Approximately 300 young people will participate and compete in different disciplines to be lauded as the best in Denmark. The competition is organised by the non-profit organisation SkillsDenmark in collaboration with the municipalities, regions and vocational colleges. SkillsDenmark works to improve the image of vocational education and training programmes and to increase interest in applying for skilled tradesmen training programmes.


 Frank Jensen (Danish Social Democrats), Lord Mayor in Copenhagen:

 “In Copenhagen, we’ve been focussing on getting more young people to enrol on vocational education and training programmes after lower secondary school. Which is why hosting the Danish Championships in Skills is such an important event for Copenhagen. It will provide the young people of Copenhagen with a unique insight into the exciting challenges and strong professional competences in the various skilled trades.”

In its budget for 2019, Copenhagen has allocated funds to allow every student in an entire year group over the next 4 years to complete a vocational placement at, for example, a construction site or in a company, and hopefully this will encourage them to become skilled workers or to choose technical training. 

Jesper Juul Sørensen, President of SkillsDenmark:

“We’re very happy that, with the goodwill of the City of Copenhagen and the Capital Region of Denmark, the Danish Championships in Skills will come to Copenhagen in 2020. It’s our aim to visit all corners of Denmark from year to year, but as the competition has grown, it can be challenging to find venues with sufficient space for the many disciplines and the large audience. Having the competition at Bella Center in 2020 means we are in good hands. When we were last here in 2015 we reached a record of 68,000 visitors.”

Jesper Christensen, Children and Youth Mayor:

“The Danish Championships in Skills can stimulate young people’s curiosity and inspire them to choose a career path that they hadn’t otherwise considered. There are many attractive jobs for skilled workers and a great sense of pride in the work they do, and this will hopefully entice young people to enrol on a vocational programme, and help ensure that we have enough skilled workers. It’s important that schools have the best conditions to introduce students to the future labour market and the Danish Championships in Skills can’t do this alone. Teaching materials and a number of activities about vocational programmes will be made available for the young people ahead of the championships.”

Sophie Hæstorp Andersen, Chairman of the Regional Council for the Capital Region of Denmark:

“I’m very happy that the Capital Region of Denmark is hosting the Danish Championships in Skills. We will use the event to generate more drive and interest in vocational education and training programmes that pave the way to well-paid employment in sectors that badly need skilled workers. And there are so many talented young people out there. The Danish Championship in Skills will give them a chance to show how talented and creative they are and the chance to represent Denmark at international competitions in craftsmanship.”

Ole Heinager, Director of NEXT and Chairman of Copenhagen Skills:

“The Danish Championships in Skills 2020 will showcase the many opportunities within vocational education and training. We will showcase the professional enthusiasm and pride to be found in skilled work, and we will show the young people the many opportunities to find good jobs and pursue further education.

Students at vocational colleges from across Denmark will compete in more than 40 different disciplines, and students from the Capital Region of Denmark will be able to follow the competition. 

Facts about the Danish Championship in Skills:

  • The Danish Championship in Skills will be held in Copenhagen from the 16-18 January in collaboration with the City of Copenhagen, Capital Region of Denmark and vocational colleges.

  • 70,000 guests are expected to visit the Danish Championship in Skills.

  • Students at vocational colleges from all over Denmark will compete in 50 different disciplines.

  • The city of Copenhagen hopes that Skills 2020 will encourage more young people to enrol on a vocational programme in the future.

  • SkillsDenmark will send competitors to EuroSkills and WorldSkills which were started in Spain in 1950.

  • SkillsDenmark was started in 1997 after a visit to WorldSkills.

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