The Ministry of Transport and Sund & Bælt have calculated the value of the Storebælt fixed link: over a period of 50 years it will give a DKK 379 billion boost to Danish society. This applies to all Danes – from infants to senior citizens, each will be DKK 67,000 wealthier as a result of us building the Storebælt link. The investment in the link thus provides a socio-economic return of 14 per cent a year.
The Storebælt link’s importance is particularly felt by the many users, who have benefited directly from it. It used to take an hour to sail across the Storebælt, these days it takes just 12 minutes. In addition, there is no need to wait for the ferry, to plan when to leave or to book.
Overall every Dane is saved an average of 6.3 hours per year because of the Storebælt link, and the benefits are spread out over the country. The analysis shows, however, that the people of Funen have particularly gained from the fixed link. The total user gains per capita on Funen are about 50 per cent higher than the national average.
Business also benefits from the link and this is ultimately felt in the household purse. Around a quarter of the amount that companies save because of the fixed link ends up with consumers in terms of lower prices for goods.
Transport Minister, Magnus Heunicke, said:
“The Storebælt link has proved to be a great success. Now that we can put a monetary value to the Storebælt link, the result is unmistakable: DKK 379 billion over 50 years shows that it is a very big win for Denmark.”
“The fixed link across Storebælt binds Denmark together and strengthens our society. The analysis shows that the benefits are spread out across the country, although the biggest gains naturally accrue to the people of Funen, which has roughly halved its travel time to the metropolitan area.”
“Denmark would not have been the same without the Storebælt link. But this was far from clear back in the 1980s when there was a very heated debate over the subject. Fortunately, courageous politicians stood firm and developed the state guarantee model that made it possible to establish the fixed link without burdening the nation’s budget. And so skilled engineers and thousands of workers above and below Storebælt toiled enthusiastically on the project. This is something we can be proud of and still draw inspiration from.”
Sund & Bælt CEO, Leo Larsen, says:
“We have now obtained figures that demonstrate that the Storebælt link brings a huge economic benefit to society. Among other things, this is because mobility in Denmark was improved significantly, which can be seen from the traffic jump, which occurred after the opening of the link, and which was far above what we had originally expected.”
“With the state guarantee model it has been possible to establish the fixed links that bind Denmark together better – overseas too. The model has therefore been found to be particularly suitable for developing and financing large, user-paid infrastructure projects.”
The Storebælt link is paid for by its users. A/S Storebælt, which owns and operates the fixed link has an interest-bearing net debt of DKK 25 billion. On this basis, the company is expected to be debt free by around 2030.